“Famine has become a tragic reality in parts of South Sudan and our worst fears have been realised,” said Serge Tissot, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Representative in South Sudan, in a news release issued jointly with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the World Food Programme (WFP).
“Many families have exhausted every means they have to survive,” he stated, explaining that these people are predominantly farmers who have lost their livestock, even their farming tools.
Famine is currently affecting parts of Unity State in the northern-central part of the country. A formal famine declaration means people have already started dying of hunger."
Many experts say that aid would be much more effective if it involved investing resources into developing better extension services for smallholders, but instead the western advisors have pushed the government to give all the benefits to large-scale, foreign controlled industrial agricultural schemes that boost food production but mostly for export, doing little to help people in South Sudan itself. It might cost less to do those things than it does to import food into Sudan to feed the people trying to scratch bare survival from the drought effected areas.
This is because various 'aid' organizations are controlled by western business interests who are pushing for more control over African farm land, expecially USAID, Citibank, the Corporate Council on Africa, and the IFC.
References (as appear in the links):
1. United Nations News Agency Press Release, February 20, 2017 www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=56205#.WK2AHPnyuCo
2. United Nations Food And Agriculture Agency Press Release, February 20, 2017 www.fao.org/news/story/en/item/471251/icode/
3. BBC World News, January 30, 2011, South Sudan Referendum: 99% vote for independence. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-12317927
4. Newsweek, October 10, 2014, George Clooney, South Sudan, How World's Newest Nation Imploded. www.newsweek.com/2014/10/10/george-clooney-south-sudan-how-worlds-newest-nation-imploded-274547.html
5.Bloomberg, October 7, 2015, Nespresso, Clooney Promote Coffee In War Torn South Sudan https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-10-07/nespresso-capsules-to-help-war-torn-south-sudan-develop-coffee
6. South Sudan News Agency, February 5, 2017, Whose Actually Governed In South Sudan. www.southsudannewsagency.com/index.php/2017/02/05/whos-actually-governed-south-sudan/
7. Nestle Press Release, April 8, 2016 http://www.nestle.com/media/news/usaid-nespresso-support-south-sudan-coffee-farmers
8. DW News Video, Coffee From South Sudan: Blessing Or Curse, Youtube, Dec. 7, 2015, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZiP_0yI6I8
9. The World Post, June 1, 2015, Meet The South Sudanese Farmers Who Want To Feed Their War-Torn Nation www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/01/south-sudan-farmers_n_7488264.html