Nigeria has warned of a possible famine in the country, and especially in the North-East. The alert was given by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), the country's equivalent of Italy's Disaster Relief Agency, in its 2012 "Report on Boko Haram Insurgency and Disasters in the North East". "Nigeria may face famine by the end of this year, because most of the small-scale farmers and big-time farmers in the north are threatened by the Boko Haram attacks", the report reads referring to the Islamist militant group whose attacks have left at least 1,200 people dead since 2009.
According to NEMA, over the past three years "more than 65% of such farmers have already migrated to the southern parts of Nigeria, fearing that the insecurity to both lives and property, including their farmlands and livestock". Productions of rice, beans, corn and onions have been the worst hit, but fishing in the Lake Chad area, one of the few options local populations have to integrate and vary their diet, was also affected. On the occasion of the presentation of this report, NEMA senior officials said they had been urged by Nigerian security forces to prepare, a humanitarian plan, working in coordination with the United Nations, in order not to be caught off-guard if the forecast turns out to be accurate.