The Zambia Civil Society Scaling up Nutrition Alliance has described as unacceptable the latest Global Hunger Index ranking which placed Zambia as the third hungriest nation in the world.
According to the 2015 World Hunger Index released this week, Zambia is ranked the third hungriest country in the world after Chad and the Central African Republic.
CSO-SUN Zambia Acting Coordinator Eneyah Phiri said the ranking is unacceptable especially that the country has been recording of successive Maize bumper harvests for close to seven years.
Mr Phiri said the latest ranking shows that Zambia still has more to do to improve the nutritious status of its people.
He has since called on Government to use the latest Global Hunger Index findings to intensify its nutrition development interventions.
“We have always said that this country has not been doing very well with respect to providing nutrition for its people, so the ranking is not shocking but it is unacceptable because if you examine the countries that are grouped with Zambia on the Index, these are countries that have witnessed civil strife in the recent times but Zambia has been peaceful for 51 years, it is unacceptable,” Mr Phiri said.
He added, “The ranking just confirms what we have always said about Zambia. We have around 40 percent of our children stunted and we hope this will serve as a call to action for all of us to do more so that Zambia can improve its ranking next year.”
The Global Hunger Index (GHI) recently compiled says Zambia is the third country in the world with highest hunger levels first been CAR and then Chad.
The GHI is compiled by International Food Policy Research Institute, a Washington-DC based agricultural research centre, with German development and humanitarian aid organization Welthungerhilfe and Irish Non-profit Concern Worldwide, scores developing countries based on four metrics.
The Index measures the proportion of undernourished people as a percentage of the population, the proportion of children under the age of 5 who suffer from wasting, the proportion of children under 5 who suffer from stunting and the mortality rate of children under the age of 5.
A staggering 52 developing countries are suffering from “serious” or “alarming” levels of hunger, according to the newly-released Global Hunger Index (GHI).
East Timor, Sierra Leone, Haiti, Madagascar, Afghanistan, Niger and Yemen made up the remainder of the top 10 countries most affected by hunger in 2015, all falling in the “serious” to “alarming” categories.
“Armed conflict and hunger are strongly associated. The countries with the highest GHI scores tend to be those engaged in or recently emerged from war,” the report accompanying the index said.
“It is perhaps not surprising that the first two of these three countries have been plagued with high hunger levels, given the violent conflict and instability their people face.”