With peace, farmers can produce more food – FAO

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The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization in South Sudan has called upon the transitional government to consolidate peace to allow farmers produce more food.

Only about 5 percent of the country is cultivated since the war started in 2013, according to FAO.

But South Sudan signed the African Union Declaration of Malabo in 2014 committing itself to develop the agricultural sector.

The declaration tasked all African states to allocate at least 10 percent of their annual national budget to develop the sector.

The government of South Sudan, in the last three financial years, has allocated only 1 percent of the national budget to agriculture, farmers and civil society organizations say.

The UN has warned that 6.5 million of the population could face severe hunger in 2020.

“South Sudan is capable of producing its own food. So the first ingredient South Sudanese need is peace,” FAO Country Representative Meshack Malo told Eye Radio.

“Mostly now they are doing one hectare each. If we have peace, they can easily move to farm at least two hectares per person because they are strong.”

Malo also called for immediate distribution of seeds, equipment and equipment to farmers.

He added that the farmers also need to be supported with extension services such as training to help them produce more food.

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