Africans Sill Facing Food Shortage

Jun 16, 2003 10:31 AM EDT

The findings, released by the World Food Programme (WFP) on Thursday, follow crop assessment missions to the six countries worst hit by last year's crisis.

The UN says the region will require substantial food aid, despite producing a million tons more food than they did during last year's drought.

The report says that about 2.7 million tons of food aid will be needed to feed Lesotho, Malawi, Swaziland, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.

WFP blames much of the shortfall on President Mugabe's policy of seizing white-owned farms.

The country remains in a deep crisis, with over five million people in need of assistance.

According to WFP, Zambia and Malawi will produce almost all the food they need.

"The region has produced enough food to meet more than two-thirds of its food requirements".

"Production, however, has been uneven, with Zimbabwe producing barely enough to meet 30% of its needs," the WFP and FAO agencies said in a joint statement.

By Sarah Park
[email protected]