Millions more in Horn of Africa without reliable water access – UNICEF

Written by on August 23, 2022

The number of people without reliable access to clean water has risen dramatically in the Horn of Africa, according to the UN’s children’s agency UNICEF, as the region experiences its worst drought in 40 years.

In Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, the number of people suffering from water shortages has increased from 9.5 million to 16.2 million within five months, UNICEF said on Tuesday.

In the West and Central African Sahel countries of Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Niger, and Nigeria, 40 million children are also at high risk of water shortages.

More than 2.8 million children suffer from severe acute malnutrition in both regions, UNICEF said.

These children are up to 11 times more likely to die from water-related diseases than well-nourished children, it said.

Water availability across the Sahel has also dropped by more than 40 per cent in the last 20 years due to climate change and complex factors such as conflict, UNICEF said.

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