Namibia marks World Food Day 2022: An urgent call to leave NO-ONE behind
15 October 2022
The Day raises awareness on “leaving no one behind” as millions cannot afford a healthy diet, putting them at high risk of food insecurity and malnutrition.
Uukwiyuushona – Namibia joined the rest of the world to commemorate this year’s World Food Day (WFD), under the theme "Leave no one behind. Better production, better nutrition, a better environment, and a better life".
The Day is aimed to raise awareness on “leaving no one behind” as millions of people around the world cannot afford a healthy diet, putting them at high risk of food insecurity and malnutrition.
In Namibia, about 26 percent of the population are estimated to be facing high levels of acute food insecurity (IPC Phase 3 or above) and are requiring urgent humanitarian assistance.
Safeguarding the poor
Some of the activities conducted to mark the Day include, giving away seeds and fruit trees, and food parcels to three most vulnerable households in dire need of food assistance in Uukwiyuushona – one of the most poverty- and hunger-stricken rural constituencies in Oshana Region due to high unemployment rate.
“There is an increasing need to work hand-in-hand to find sustainable solutions to address issues of poverty and hunger."
All of us - government, private sector and development partners - should collaborate to weave strong social protection nets and bring up long-lasting solutions to end hunger and poverty once and for all,” Elia Irimari, Oshana Regional Governor said on the occasion of the WFD national event held in rural Uukwiyuushona.
The government and its partners unveiled the ‘Food Mountain’ which consisted of a variety of food and household items distributed to over 130 households across 12 constituencies in Oshana Region.
Additionally, farming households received farming implements, poultry feeds, building materials for a chicken coop complete with cages, as well as a drip irrigation system, donated by he Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Food Programme while a local school’s garden got refurbished by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) Namibia to ensure the sustainability of its school feeding programme.
A sustainable future
FAO has, over the years, provided support to the government of Namibia through different projects and programmes to improve food and nutrition security and reduce poverty.
“Challenges, such as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the climate crisis, environmental degradation, conflict and deepening inequalities, have negatively affected many countries’ ability to ensure food security for all. We need to adopt innovative and climate smart agricultural practises to improve production and productivity while achieving better environment results for sustained production,” Lewis Hove, acting FAO Representative in Namibia said.
Meanwhile in his keynote address, the Minister of Agriculture, Water and Land Reform (MAWLR) Honourable Carl Schlettwein called on farmers to consider a reorientation of agricultural priorities towards producing a diversity of nutritious foods to meet the population’s dietary requirements.
“Farmers should consider, wherever possible, to engage in local small-scale aquaculture production as a source of livelihood and a vital source of food, supporting the nutritional needs of local communities,” he stated in a speech read on his behalf by MAWLR’s Executive Director, Ndiyakupi Nghituwamata.
The Minister also called on all stakeholders in Namibia to be active players in the fight against poverty and hunger.
“Let us all hold hands, work together in solidarity and strive towards creating a better and more sustainable future for all, where no one is left behind,” he urged.
About World Food Day
World Food Day, marked annually on 16 October, also commemorates the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in 1945.
The 16th national WFD observation provided a platform for stakeholders in Namibia to launch an appeal to "leave NO-ONE behind" in strategies to address hunger and poverty, and respond to shocks in the food and agriculture sector.