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FAO, Germany, ECOWAS launch hunger-free initiative for West Africa

The Food and Agriculture Oragnisation (FAO), the German government and ECOWAS on October 18, 2012 launched a new project with the main objective of eliminating hunger in West Africa

The three-year project will be co-funded by the German government and the 15-nation West African bloc.

In a statement, the FAO said the project will support “ECOWAS and its member countries in working towards a Hunger-free West Africa by building on existing policies and programmes, increasing stakeholder engagement and amplifying the current political commitment in the region.”

Officials say the hunger-free initiative will also support ECOWAS in the implementation of the Regional Partnership Compact for the Implementation of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Plan (CAADP).

FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva noted that, “The project will be crucial for hunger eradication as it will integrate the right to food into national CAADP initiatives.”

According to him, the CAADP was only a start but “it has the potential to become a model for other regions of Africa and Asia.”

“We need more cooperation among governments and the active involvement of political leaders, civil society, academia, development partners and others throughout the region,” Graziano da Silva declared.

He noted that whereas hunger declined at global level over the last 20 years, it had risen in sub-Saharan Africa from 170 million to 234 million.

Germany is providing $2.4 million and ECOWAS has announced its commitment to co-fund the initiative and to ensure adequate participation of all member countries.

By Ekow Quandzie

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