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WFP Staff Worldwide Join South Africa In Mourning Passing Of President Nelson Mandela

ROME – Today, people in South Africa and around the world are mourning the loss of an inspirational leader, President Nelson Mandela, a champion against injustice and a true ally in the fight against hunger.

President Mandela’s concern was always for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged people in the world, and his words and actions were a motivational force for all of us at the UN World Food Programme (WFP).  

In 2004, President Mandela delivered a message to a meeting of WFP’s senior staff, saying:

“Hunger is an issue of social justice and not economics. Our economic approach to food and its distribution reflects our basic moral values. There are relatively poor countries where almost everyone is reasonably fed and richer ones where there is widespread malnutrition. The economic systems in these countries vary. Those who have succeeded have done so because they have made it a priority to end it. Hunger is a moral issue.”

WFP has more than 13,000 staff in more than 80 countries who work every day to bring these words to life. We believe that hunger is solvable and we will honour the memory of President Mandela by continuing to carry out our mission to end hunger, wherever it is found.  

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WFP is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. Last year, WFP reached more than 97 million people in 80 countries with food assistance.

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For more information please contact (email address:
Emilia Casella, WFP/Rome, Tel. +39 06 6513 3854, Mob. +39 347 9450634
Gregory Barrow, WFP/London, Mob.  +44 7968 008474
Elisabeth Byrs, WFP/Geneva, Tel. +41 22 917 8564, Mob. +41 79 473 4570
Bettina Luescher, WFP/New York, Tel. +1-646-5566909, Mob.  +1-646-8241112