As South Sudan marks its first anniversary of independence, half of its 9.7 million citizens are struggling to meet their very basic food needs. Fertile and resource rich, the country has huge potential to feed its own population, yet is in the midst of an escalating food crisis. The poor rainfall in 2011, internal conflict, and complex population movement is now dramatically compounded by an increase in conflict with Sudan, leading to severe economic crisis. In some parts of South Sudan, families, who were already struggling to make ends meet, are forced to eat just one meal or day or rely on leaves and roots to survive. All too often, women and children are bearing the brunt.
A new Oxfam briefing paper - Tackling the food deficit in the world’s newest country – looks at the reasons for the current food crisis in South Sudan and draws attention to the impact on the population. It asks for the Government of the Republic of South Sudan (RoSS) and international actors to urgently address the food insecurity crisis, ensure that resources reach the most vulnerable, and maintain efforts to provide peace and development for the citizens of the world’s newest country.