More than 22,000 children affected by malnutrition in southern DRC

Kinshasa, DR Congo (PANA) – More than 22,700 children are suffering from malnutrition in the province of Katanga, in south-west of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the spokesperson for the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), Yvon Edoumou, said on Wednesday.

He told a press conference in Kinshasa that of the number, 15,162 were suffering from severe malnutrition and 7,541 others had moderate malnutrition.

Mr Edoumou quoted UNICEF as saying US$3 million was needed to assist children suffering from malnutrition and for 1,500 pregnant and breast-feeding women in the province.

Mr Edoumou, referring to nutritional surveys carried out over the past two years, announced also that the situation in Katanga remained precarious.

In the territories of Manono and Malemba Nkulu, the overall severe malnutrition rates are estimated at 19.8% and 15.2% respectively, exceeding the emergency intervention line that was set at 15%.

The resurgence of armed violence, which has forced the movement of populations thus disrupting agricultural activities, as well as the poor food practices, lack of access to quality health care, lack of hygiene and bad sanitation have been blamed for the situation.

Katanga is DRC’s richest province, which has a huge quantity of cooper, iron, cobalt, manganese, zinc, radium, gold and diamond.
-0- PANA KON/TBM/IBA/MSA/MA 31July2013

31 juillet 2013 20:25:58

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