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Food security in focus at SADC summit

At least 27 million people may suffer food insecurity as a result of the poor 2015/16 farming season.

FILE: Zimbabwean children line up for food. Picture: AFP

PRETORIA - Food security is expected to dominate a Southern African Development Community (SADC) summit opening in Swaziland.

At least 27 million people, about nine percent of the region's population, are food insecure as a result of the poor 2015/16 farming season.

The current El Niño-induced drought in SADC is the worst in 35 years.

The regional El-Niño response team has so far prepared a regional drought appeal for assistance.

SADC chairperson, President Ian Khama of Botswana launched the regional appeal amounting to $2.7 billion.

Yesterday, the SADC Organ on Peace and Security, now under Tanzania's chairmanship, discussed the security explosion in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar and Lesotho as well as requests by Burundi and the Comores to join SADC.