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80m Africans Risk Extreme Poverty, Obasanjo Warns

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo and ex-Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Desalegn Boshe, have warned that 80 million Africans risk extreme poverty if the COVID-19 response is not focused on food security, agribusiness and rural development.

They warned that the continent could be the worst hit from the economic crisis unleashed by the pandemic as a result of the disruptions caused by it on the food ecosystem.

The two former leaders' warning was contained in a publication posted on the website of the International Fund for Agricultural Development, seen by THISDAY yesterday.

They co-authored the publication, warning African countries against neglecting the rural poor.

"Africa has so far escaped the worst health consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. "However, the continent looks like it could be the worst hit from the economic fallout of the crisis: Eighty million Africans could be pushed into extreme poverty if action is not taken. And disruptions in the food system raise the prospect of more Africans falling into hunger.

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