A desperate and largely unknown humanitarian crisis is deteriorating in the Lake Chad Basin region of West Africa, forcing millions of people to flee their homes and leaving millions more in need of humanitarian assistance. Oxfam is providing life-saving support but help is urgently needed to prevent the crisis turning into a catastrophe.
Impact of the crisis on Africa
Oxfam's Emma Seery: “With the economic crisis costing Africa $245bn this year alone, this is a state of emergency. But where is the emergency plan for the $25bn the G8 promised?
“The Africa discussion was relegated to an insultingly token session. How can we take the G8 seriously when all they offer Africa is broken promises and photo opportunities?”
Oxfam's Gawain Kripke said: "Oxfam welcomes the G8 joint statement that commits leaders to focus on hunger and the needs of small farmers. In one of the only bright spots of the summit, the statement commits $20 billion over 3 years for agriculture development, which is higher than expected.
"The G8 and other leaders upped their game today by committing $20 billion for agriculture assistance. Much of this funding is recycled, but the new money makes a downpayment on eliminating hunger. With a billion people facing hunger, more new money is still needed."
Verdict on the Summit
Jeremy Hobbs, Executive Director, Oxfam International: “For Obama it was ‘yes we can’, for Berlusconi’s G8 it’s ‘no we won’t’.
“This summit has been a shambles, it did nothing for Africa, and the world is still being cooked.
“In ancient Rome people got bread and circuses, but all we got from Berlusconi’s G8 was a circus.
“Canada 2010 is the end of the road for the G8 - all the promises they have made are due. They have 12 short months to avoid being remembered as the ones who let the poor and the planet die.
"With the 2 degree limit, the G8 effectively agreed the climate floodwaters shouldn't reach the ceiling. But they did nothing about the water already swirling around our necks.
"The G8 must deliver action now to counter and cope with climate chaos. This means developed countries delivering at least 40% below 1990 levels by 2020, and more than $150bn per year for developing country action on adaptation and emissions.
“The G8 are leaving today with a huge unfinished agenda. Millions of children are out of school, millions more dying from curable diseases. This is shameful and the Canadians must move fast to fix it. There won’t be any second chances.”