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One Sahelian out of two lives below the poverty line, and every day one out of three experiences the pangs of hunger and malnutrition. Nearly 3 billion people in the world live with less than two dollars a day and more than 800 million people still suffer from hunger.

On the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the United Nations, the international community pledged to cut by half the number of poor people and individuals starving in the world. In the Sahel, food insecurity has been the major sub-region’s central preoccupation since the major droughts of the 70s and 80s.

Despite the progress made in 20 years, we are forced to note that the legitimate right of every Sahelian to food has not yet come true. Large-scale food insecurity is sapping our societies, undermining the foundations of socio-economic development and standing in the way of sustainable management of natural resources.

The population of the Sahel doubles every 25 years. It is a more and more urban population whose eating habits are changing. The social bases that used to give crucial importance to solidarity are now in full change. The democratisation and liberalisation process has caused our states to pull out, to the benefit of the civil society and private sector actors. Our environment, our culture and our economy have to take up many challenges posed by the globalization. All these developments have significant impacts on the food security conditions. We have therefore no choice but to promote new approaches that take into account the complex nature of the causes of food insecurity and its various forms, and empower all the stakeholders.

The formulation of the sustainable food security strategy for poverty reduction in the Sahel, and of the national and regional strategies was based on a process of constant dialogue between the States, the civil society and the private sector actors, the professional organizations and the international partners. This process now opens new prospects. It is now up to each and everyone to learn the lessons. Guaranteeing food security is first of all a collective responsibility.

The local communities and the civil society and private sector actors are those who live next to the problems. They are in close contact with the crises, and they lay the foundations for a sustainable development. It is of general interest to build their capacities so that they can fully play their role [...]

Amadou Toumani Touré President of the Republic of Mali
Current Chairman of CILSS.
From "No to Poverty, Opting for Sustainable Food Security"

A. Guided Commentary

  1. Relying on the text, point out the main characteristics of poverty in Sahelian countries (02 points)
  2. Referring to the text, state in your own words the difficulties faced by Sahelian countries to insure food security. (03 points)
  3. According to the text, how can food insecurity be solved? (04 points)
  4. Comment on the following assertion: "Guaranteeing food security is first of all a collective responsibility" (05 points)

B. Translation (06 points)

Translate into French, from "The population of the Sahel doubles" down to "many challenges posed by the globalisation".

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