• Crisis Severity ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Impact ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Humanitarian Conditions ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Complexity ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Access Constraints ?
    No constraints
    Extreme constraints

Key figures

  • 66,107,000 Total population [?]
  • 38,222,000 People affected [?]
  • 950,000 People displaced [?]



Southern African countries of Eswatini, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe are facing acute food security crises of varied magnitudes. Various climate shocks in the region are affecting around 14.4m people.? October to December 2019 were extremely dry, one of the 10 driest seasons in the region since 1981.?Food insecurity rates are reported to be 140% higher than 2018.? Zimbabwe has the highest number of severely food insecure people in the region and reports the country’s worst food insecurity in a decade. Half of its population (7.7m) are at risk of starvation and the country’s food crisis is aggravated by economic and infrastructural failures, low investment in the agricultural sector and inefficient land reforms.?  Drought has decimated Zambia’s staple maize production in the last five years.? 

Exacerbated by recurrent droughts, subsequent flooding in Madagascar, Malawi, Zambia and Mozambique has destroyed rice plains and increased the scarcity of grains in rural and urban communities. Rainfall forecasts are also at an all-time low which means that lean seasons will last longer than expected. People’s weak immune systems from malnutrition is further heightened in the area and raises concern of disease spread. About 15.7m people are living with HIV in the region?, with inadequate access to healthcare and recommended drugs. A reliance on maize cultivation as a mono-cropping agricultural system is likely to expose farmers in the region to higher risk of poverty if planted maize becomes damaged by pests or locust outbreak.

Latest Developments


No significant recent humanitarian developments. This crisis is being monitored by our analysis team.