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06 Feb 2016 description
report The Global Fund

PRETORIA, February 5, 2016 - The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and a Regional Coordinating Mechanism (RCM) representing a group of 10 Southern African countries today signed a landmark grant to pioneer innovative models to reduce high rates of TB in the mining sector.

05 Feb 2016 description

Pretoria - Two more cases of typhoid fever have been confirmed in Gauteng.

The Gauteng Health Department on Tuesday said the cases were confirmed on Monday at the Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital in the Tshwane district.

“A 38-year-old Zimbabwean female patient, who resides in Centurion, came to the hospital last Thursday. She was confused on arrival at the hospital. She was referred from Centurion Clinic,” said the department.

The department said she had travelled home to Zimbabwe two weeks ago and had just returned to South Africa.

29 Jan 2016 description
report IRIN

Nairobi, 29 janvier 2016 (IRIN) - Cette année, l’Afrique australe est confrontée au risque de mauvaises récoltes, car les précipitations ont atteint leur niveau le plus bas dans une région où 29 millions de personnes vivent déjà sans un accès fiable à une alimentation bon marché et nourrissante en quantité suffisante.

« Les perspectives sont alarmantes, car plusieurs zones n’ont connu que peu ou pas de précipitations et la fenêtre de plantation des céréales se ferme rapidement ou s’est déjà fermée dans certains pays », a mis en garde le Programme alimentaire mondial (PAM).

28 Jan 2016 description
report IRIN

By Obi Anyadike, Africa Editor

NAIROBI, 28 January 2016 (IRIN) - Southern Africa is facing the threat of extensive crop failures this year as a result of record low rainfall in a region in which 29 million people already don't have reliable access to enough affordable and nutritious food.

“With little or no rain falling in many areas and the window for the planting of cereals closing fast or already closed in some countries, the outlook is alarming,” the World Food Programme has warned.

23 Jan 2016 description

Pretoria - Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwinti says the current drought in the country calls for cooperation from the private sector and farmers as well as planning for the future.

“Now more than ever this situation calls for us to work together and support each other,” said the Minister.

Farmers in provinces including the North West, Free State, Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Gauteng and Northern Cape have been scrambling to find water for their crops and livestock as the country’s dam levels have dropped.

18 Jan 2016 description

JOHANNESBURG – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is increasingly concerned about food security in southern Africa where an estimated 14 million people are facing hunger following prolonged dry spells that led to a poor harvest last year.

The El Niño global weather event, which is leading to even worse drought across the region, is already affecting this year’s crop. With little or no rain falling in many areas and the window for the planting of cereals closing fast or already closed in some countries, the outlook is alarming.

15 Jan 2016 description

Johannesburg, South Africa | AFP | Friday 1/15/2016 - 15:47 GMT

Drought-ravaged South Africa said Friday it would import six million tonnes of the local staple maize -- half of the average annual harvest -- after the driest season in 100 years.

"If the country is to survive beyond May of this year we need to have five to six million (tonnes of maize)," Agriculture Minister Senzeni Zokwana, announced.

South African farmers produce an average 12 million tonnes of the grain each year, but can harvest as much as 14 million during a good season.

14 Jan 2016 description
report IRIN

By Obi Anyadike, Africa Editor

NAIROBI, 14 January 2016 (IRIN) - Global food prices are at their lowest level in years, but thanks to the exceptionally strong US dollar poor people in developing countries suffering severe climate shocks are seeing no benefit.

The FAO Food Price Index for 2015 was 19 points down on 2014, marking the fourth consecutive annual decline across a basket of commodities.

13 Jan 2016 description

** Food Security Snapshot**

  • El-Niño-associated drought conditions result in unfavourable 2016 crop prospects
  • Maize supplies tighter in 2015/16 marketing year (May/April) on account of weather-reduced 2015 harvest
  • Exports well down on last year’s level, while imports increase
  • Maize prices at record levels in December 2015

Drought conditions adversely impact 2016 cropping activities and early crop development

04 Jan 2016 description
report Reuters - AlertNet

JOHANNESBURG, Jan 4 (Reuters) - South African maize prices maintained their record run into 2016, scaling historic highs on Monday amid growing drought concerns and rand weakness.

The March contract for white maize added almost 2.6 percent to a new record of 4,781 rand ($307) a tonne while the same contract for the yellow variety climbed 1.8 percent to 3,677 rand a tonne.

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28 Dec 2015 description

Pretoria –The Water and Sanitation Department says the release of extra water from the Katse Dam in Lesotho will bolster water supply and relieve the impact of the current drought.

Margaret-Ann Diedricks, Water and Sanitation Director General, last week authorised the release of extra water from the Katse Dam.

The flow of the 10 Cumec started on Thursday and it is expected to take ten days to reach the abstraction point in Aliwal North, covering a distance of about 530 kilometres.

25 Dec 2015 description

Pretoria – The Department of Water and Sanitation has handed over water tankers to some of the municipalities affected by the drought in KwaZulu-Natal.

The water tankers, which came as per direction from Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane, will go a long way towards ensuring the local municipalities serve communities better.

Three trucks were handed over to the Abaqulusi Local Municipality, while the UMkhanyakude District Municipality received five trucks.

22 Dec 2015 description

FAO actions aim to minimize impact on agriculture

22 December 2015, Rome - Crop and livestock production prospects in Southern Africa have been weakened by the El Niño weather phenomenon that has lowered rains and increased temperatures.

21 Dec 2015 description
report Pulitzer Center

JAE LEE

Francis Kyakulaga, a district sanitation manager, and I had finished eating a meal at the ground floor restaurant of the Mwaana Hotel on the Trans-African Highway in Uganda. During the meal, we noticed an increasing commotion in the hotel lobby area, and Kyakulaga asked a man what was happening. He informed us that someone had collapsed upstairs.

Read the full article

20 Dec 2015 description

Pretoria - Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane has handed over additional water tankers to the North West province as the drought conditions continue.

The six water tankers were handed over to North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo on Thursday to distribute to the most affected areas in the province.

Four of the tankers are meant to primarily assist the Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality (NMMDM) with better delivery of water services. The other two will be kept for emergency responses, where and when needed by the province.

17 Dec 2015 description
report UN Children's Fund

Following a year of historic global agreements, world must translate promises into action to benefit most vulnerable children in 2016

NEW YORK, 17 December 2015 – More than 16 million babies were born in conflict zones in 2015 – 1 in 8 of all births worldwide this year – UNICEF said today, a figure that underscores the vulnerability faced by increasing numbers of children.

04 Dec 2015 description
report IRIN

By Obinna Anyadike, Editor-at-Large

NAIROBI, 4 December 2015 (IRIN) - Close to 29 million people in southern Africa are already facing food shortages as a result of this season’s poor harvest, but worse could be on the way.

“Serious concerns are mounting that Southern Africa will this coming season face another poor harvest, possibly a disastrous one,” the UN’s aid coordinating agency, OCHA, warned in a recent report.

04 Dec 2015 description

Key messages

  • The region is extremely vulnerable to weather hazards such as tropical cyclones, floods, droughts and strong winds.

  • There is lack of resilience and coping mechanisms to the climate-related shocks, which results in heavy social and economic consequences for the population. Improving the local communities' resilience capacities remains central to the EU’s humanitarian assistance.