A new report, the COVID-19 impact monitoring report, released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has said 30 percent of Nigerian households battled with ‘severe food insecurity’ in June, 2020.
The report said food security situation in Nigeria substantially worsened after the outbreak of the virus, with June insecurity nearly three times higher than in July/August 2018 and nearly six times higher than in January/February 2019.
The NBS said it interviewed 1,820 households from the baseline and the data collected are representative at the national level.
The report said only 13 percent of the households reported receiving food assistance while two percent of households reported receiving a direct cash transfer.
The report said, “About 30 percent of households interviewed in June experienced severe food insecurity due to lack of money or other resources.
“However, there was no significant increase in access to safety nets or other forms of support. The incidence of severe food insecurity in June 2020 was nearly three times higher than in July/August 2018 and nearly six times higher than in January/February 2019.
“The most widely reported challenges faced by non-farm businesses are difficulty raising money (87 percent of households owning non-farm businesses), difficulty buying and receiving supplies and inputs (77 percent), and difficulty selling goods and services (70 percent),” the bureau said.
“These challenges persist across both urban and rural areas. This suggests that both input and output markets continue to be disrupted by the COVID-19 crisis.”
The report, however, said the number of people who were not working in June reduced on account of easing of lock down restrictions, but income of households remained at precarious levels, especially for those with a non-farm business.
The report said 38 percent of households engaged in agriculture had to modify their farming plans.