The Global Hunger Index says that Africa has the highest rates of malnutrition in 2009, and Colombia’s problem with hunger is “moderate.”
Filed in Berlin Wednesday jointly by the World Organization Against Hunger and the International Food Policy Research Institute, the Global Hunger Index revealed that African countries continue to lead world hunger levels, with women comprising the poorest and most malnourished.
In Latin America, the Index considers hunger to be a serious problem in Nicaragua, and moderate in the Dominican Republic, Panama, Ecuador, Peru, El Salvador, Venezuela, Paraguay and Colombia.
The Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, Eritrea, Sierra Leone and Chad, in that order, have the most acute hunger index, with more than 30 per cent of their population suffering from serious malnutrition.
Bärbel Dieckmann, president of the World Organization Against Hunger, said that over a billion people are suffering from malnutrition, the majority of them women and children, reported newspaper El Espectador.
70 per cent of the 1.4 billion people in the world living in poverty are women, Dieckmann said, adding that in countries where women looked after the family economy and had greater influence and recognition at a societal level, they and their children had better diets. He called on industrialized nations to take this into account.
“Strengthening the role of women is key in the fight against hunger and poverty,” said Dieckmann, adding that “politics of development aid can not be the continuation of a policy of state interests with other means.”
It is estimated that 642 million people in Asia, 265 million in Africa and another 53 million people in Latin America are malnourished. India, with 230 million undernourished citizens, tops the list.