BUJUMBURA, Feb. 21 (Xinhua) -- The Burundian government on Wednesday rejected a report by UN humanitarian agency OCHA that claimed 3.6 million Burundian citizens are facing a food crisis.
"On Monday, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) presented a report on Burundi's 2018 humanitarian response plan showing that the country's food security situation is alarming. The Burundian government rejects this report full of fabricated figures," said Burundian Government Spokesman Philippe Nzobonariba.
OCHA did not collaborate with involved ministries including the interior ministry, human rights ministry, health ministry and agriculture ministry while writing the report, said Nzobonariba.
He said OCHA presented figures of people facing a food crisis in an "exaggerated" manner, underlining that this is not the first time.
"The government is surprised because the food security situation in 2018 is far better than that of 2017 considering efforts made in the sectors of agriculture, health and repatriation of refugees where interesting results are visible," said Nzobonariba.
The OCHA's figure of people facing a food crisis accounts for about one third of Burundi's total population. Women and children are the most affected by the food crisis, according to the report.
The report also said that the number of Burundian citizens in need of humanitarian assistance has increased by 18 percent in 2017 compared to 2016.
The report said the increase was due to poverty, deterioration of the socioeconomic situation, malnutrition, poor access to treatment and climate change.