In line with the well-known practice of disseminating distorted and erroneous information as well as figures, certain international organizations are echoing reports that serious famine is hovering over large portion of the Horn of Africa, including Eritrea this year due to drought and insufficient rains.
Regarding Eritrea in particular, such a report is not only baseless but also incorporates distorted information. As such, the attempt to include Eritrea in the list is but a manifestation of fantasy dreams entertained by discredited parties.
The facts on the ground prove that compared to other parts of the Horn region, there so far exists no serious food shortage in Eritrea. And contrary to the aforementioned distorted accounts, the 2009 rainy season was relatively better in this country. Besides, thanks to the Eritrean government’s major national campaign towards achieving food security on the basis of the self-reliance principle, various micro-dams have been constructed in different parts of the country, thus effectively conserving and utilizing the rain waters. Hence, Eritrea’s capacity to raise agricultural productivity continues to gain momentum from year to year. The Government is also making substantial investment to introduce modern technology and up-to-date agricultural machineries so as to further boost output.
As a result of the concerted endeavors made by the people and Government of Eritrea, the country not only managed to overcome last year’s threat of famine but has also laid the necessary ground present for avoiding undue dependence on rain-fed agriculture.
This being the truth, it is quite obvious that such reports are merely an extension of the continuing political smear campaign against Eritrea. However, it should be noted at this juncture that the dissemination of distorted and unsubstantiated information aimed at misleading the international community constitutes an illegal practice, the perpetrators of which will be held accountable.
The BBC’s Arabic program is one of those which disseminated the aforementioned baseless information. At the time when the Eritrean Ministry of Information sought to respond to the unsubstantiated information, the reply given by the said media organization was: “we will give the chance to respond only if it is in tune with the information we had broadcast.” This amply proves that its continued anti-Eritrea campaign is not due to the lack of information but a deliberate act. However, it is not overly surprising to hear such allegations on the part of a broadcasting organization that claims the ‘prevalence’ of a 44-degree centigrade temperature in Asmara, while the city was experiencing heavy summer rains.