U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Linda Thomas-Greenfield made the announcement yesterday that a $150 million package has been made available for Africa to help address food and humanitarian crises.
She revealed the decision during an event at the University of Ghana in Accra, Ghana, which gathered over 500 participants. Mrs. Thomas-Greenfield said the world is facing unprecedented food crises, requiring what she termed an "unprecedented global response."
"For our part, the United States is committed to this work. … But more funding is needed to address food security and to address crises that compound food security, like refugees and internally displaced people," she said. "I am proud to announce nearly $150 million in new, additional humanitarian funding and development assistance, pending Congressional approval, for Africa."
According to her, if Congress approves, the new package will increase United States' humanitarian assistance to Africa to $6.6 billion in 2022 alone.
Citing the effects of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, the ambassador said that worldwide food prices are 23% higher than a year ago. Russia and Ukraine provide over 40% of Africa's wheat supply.
She also added that the United States funding will expand investments in fertilizer, grains, and other crops in Africa to meet "the goal of increasing resilience to future shocks."
Speaking on the proposed $150 million assistance, the ambassador said the facility includes $2.5 million in new development assistance for Ghana and $20 million for Uganda. Mrs. Thomas-Greenfield had visited Uganda before coming to Ghana.
She also said the facility would provide "lifesaving support to refugees, asylum-seekers, internally displaced persons, stateless persons and persecuted people across Africa."
Condemning the war in Ukraine, she said the U.N. Security Council must be proactive to prevent food from being used as a weapon of war.
"The world needs to see how food insecurity increases the risk of conflict. And the Security Council needs to do a better job of stopping food from being used as a weapon of war," she said.
Some critics, however, continue to argue that foreign aid increases corruption and has little or no impact on the people.
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