By Almachius Kanyasi.
East Africa’s oldest democracy, most democratic and peaceful country could be at the edge of a massive malnutrition amongst its children.
Aside from problems such as natural disaster that are plunging Africa, there is enormous starvation and depression among citizens that has resulted into child abuse and malnutrition among adults and children.
Poor nutrition has remained a major challenge among children leading to childhood illness and child related deaths in Tanzania.
This disrupts children’s physical and mental development thus reduces their ability to perform well in fields such as in school and social life.
According to UNICEF report, more than 2.7million Tanzanian children under the age of 5 were estimated to be stunted and more than 600,000 suffering from acute malnutrition.
In Tanzania, about 42% of 3 million children under the age of five have been stunted due to poor nutrition before birth until up to the age of 2 years after birth.
An estimated 130 children lose their lives every day from lack of proper nutrition.
Not forgetting children’s effectiveness in adult life and chronic and related problems.
Levels of disability in Tanzania are now reported to be more than 40%.
This is all attributed to the poor levels of access to food and proper nutrition in among children.
Children’s exposure to dust happens among Tanzania’s towns including the most prominent parts of Tanzania like Njombe, Iranga, Kagera and even parts of Arusha.
However in terms of food demand and production, the country has had a surplus of over 3 million tones of food
While production in the 2016/2017 and 2015/2016 was over 15 million tones with a corresponding food demand of 13 million tones for 2016/2017 and 2017/2018 some people remain with little access to a good diet.
In 2017 /2018 food production reached over 16 million tones with 9.5 million tones of cereal crops only.
Rice production is now over 2 million tones
According to Tanzanian Revenue Authority (TRA), during the period of June 2017 to 2018 a total of 64,000 tons of maize were sold to Saudi Arabia, Uganda, Kenya and South Sudan.
It should be noted that areas of Mtwara, Kigoma are regions in which the incident of malnutrition in children has accelerated and if this is not closely monitored Tanzania could have a generation of mentally impaired children.