S. Sudan launches parliamentary alliance for food security, nutrition
The United Nations agencies and the national legislative assembly have formed an alliance to advance strategies on the right to adequate food in the country.
The alliance that brings together the World Food Programme (WFP), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) will also encourage investments in South Sudan’s food and nutrition security.
The alliance was officially announced in Juba yesterday, just days after the most recent Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC), which indicates that 7.76 million people are experiencing crisis-level or worse levels of food insecurity, and 1.4 million children are underweight.
The initiative will equip the parliamentarians with knowledge on the significance of nutrition and food security. The coalition will also push for a change in the way that legislative frameworks, such as the right to food, address the progress of food and nutrition security.
In a joint press release published on Friday, UNICEF commended the lawmakers for their dedication to promoting a healthy diet in South Sudan.
“The parliamentarians are crucial partners in the fight to reduce poverty and malnutrition, given their legislative, budget allocation and policy oversight roles,” said UNICEF Representative in South Sudan, Ms Hamida Lasseko.
“Ensuring better food and nutrition policies and frameworks in legislation with sufficient budget to achieve improved nutrition outcomes would have very substantial socio-economic returns,” she added.
According to Meshack Malo, FAO Representative in South Sudan, there is still more work to be done and everyone needs to be on board because two-thirds of the nation still experiences severe levels of food insecurity.
“The launch of the South Sudan Parliamentary Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition signals full engagement of the legislative arm of government. Their support will be significant in highlighting and advocating for much needed investment in agriculture, food security and nutrition,” said Malo.
The ongoing food and nutrition instability in South Sudan is largely due to a confluence of long-lasting climate shocks, conflict, and socioeconomic insecurity.
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