The East African region could be on the verge of a food crisis if huge swarms of locusts devouring crops and pasture are not brought under control.
A top UN official, Director of emergencies for the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), Dominique Burgeon told the BBC that massive food assistance may be required for countries like Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
All these countries mentioned are severely affected, even as efforts to control the infestation have so far not been effective.
Aerial spraying of pesticides is the most effective way of fighting the swarms but countries in the region do not have the right resources.
There are fears that the locusts – already in the hundreds of billions – will multiply further.
The FAO says the insects are breeding so fast that numbers could grow 500 times by June.
The UN body has now called on the international community to provide nearly $76m (£58m) to fund the spraying of the affected areas with insecticide.