The humanitarian situation in Somalia is rapidly deteriorating and renewed famine is a strong possibility in 2017. Out of 12.3 million Somalis, over half (6.2 million) are acutely food insecure and in need of humanitarian assistance. Of these, nearly 3 million face food security Crisis and Emergency (IPC Phases 3 and 4) and need urgent life-saving assistance. Hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people are on the move in search of food, water and treatment for malnutrition and diseases. Rural populations make up two thirds of the people in IPC Phases 3 and 4, and nearly 90 per cent of those in IPC Phase 4. Close to one million acutely malnourished children will need treatment, including 200,000 severely malnourished children who are more vulnerable than any other group and in need of immediate life-saving support.
Extreme lack of access to water is a key driver of the crisis in arid areas. Due to the depletion of water sources, some communities are relying on buying water at prices which are on the increase, beyond the reach of many. Over 4.5 million people are now in need of WASH assistance. Those who resort to unsafe water sources are at increased risk of water-borne diseases such as AWD/cholera. According to WHO, 15,655 AWD/cholera cases and 365 deaths have been reported between January and 20 March 2017, and the outbreak has now spread to 12 out of 18 regions. The number of cases has reached same levels reported for all of 2016 when Somalia experienced its most recent major outbreak of AWD/Cholera. The current case fatality rate is 2.3 per cent which is higher than the emergency threshold of 1 per cent and reflects the severity of the outbreak plus the limited access to proper health service for the affected communities.
The widespread water and pasture shortages have forced people to migrate in search of food and water for domestic and livestock use. Between November 2016 and the end of February 2017, around 257,000 people have been internally displaced due to drought, according to the UNHCR-led Protection and Return Monitoring Network (PRMN). Most of the newly displaced are moving into urban areas and joining existing settlements or establishing new settlements, while others are crossing into neighbouring countries. In Baidoa alone, close to 50,000 people have arrived since November, and the number of settlements for IDPs has increased from 78 to 140 sites. According to UNHCR, over 4,100 people have crossed into Ethiopia in January and February 2017 (OCHA, 24 Mar 2017)
The northern parts of he country and coastal areas in the south will continue to receive rains in the next three days (Map 1).
The rainfall forecast for the coming week (Map – 2) is pointing towards moderate to heavy rains in the basins both in the Ethiopian highlands and inside Somalia. Many areas in Puntland and Somaliland will also continue to receive rains during this period
Chair of Committee on World Food Security urges all stakeholders to support immediate and longer-term relief
Rome, 17 May 2017--Governments, civic groups and businesses need to rally support for both immediate relief to people in countries at risk of famine and longer-term initiatives that will allow them to recover and restore their livelihoods, Ambassador Amira Gornass, Chair of the Committee on World Food Security, said today.
The humanitarian situation continues to deteriorate and the estimated number of people in need of humanitarian assistance has now increased to 6.7 million people — more than half the population of the country, according to the latest projections by the FAO-managed Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit.
Some 683,000 people have been displaced due to drought in Somalia since November 2016.
Key mission findings
The majority of drought-related displacement has occurred within regions, with people migrating from rural to urban areas while there are “climate refugees” who came from Somali region of Ethiopia. The pull factor of IDPs to Gaalkacyo is the presence of humanitarian organizations proving assistance.
Local authorities (north Gaalkayco) noted that drought and conflict are the major causes of displacements with more than 40,000 people having been displaced by the drought since January
“Atta’ El-Khier from Doha El-Khier” Initiative concluded its journey to Somalia. The initiative provided an urgent relief to the Somali people, including food baskets, medicines, and drinking water.
The Baidoa IDP settlement assessment report reflects the findings from a multi-cluster needs assessment of 168 IDP Settlements in Badioa. Data collection was conducted from 3rd April to 18th April 2017, through 639 household interviews, 168 key informant interviews (KIIs), facility mapping and spatial analysis in IDP settlements in Baidoa.
May 15th, 2017 ― Doha: Qatar Red Crescent's (QRCS) mission in Somalia is set to initiate Ramadan projects worth nearly QR 5.5 million, for the vulnerable groups, to help improve their living standards and mitigate the impact of the three-year drought.
Under its annual Ramadan Iftar, QRCS will distribute food packages to poor families, at a total cost of QR 400,680. Lasting for 15 days each, these distributions will benefit 2,500 families (12,500 people).
New Zealand will provide a further $5 million in relief assistance to pressing humanitarian crises across Africa and the Middle East, Foreign Minister Gerry Brownlee has announced.
“An estimated 45 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance across South Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria and Yemen, of which 20 million face starvation and famine,” Mr Brownlee says.
“Conflict and insecurity have exacerbated drought conditions, causing widespread humanitarian need.
Light rains are expected to prevail for the next 3 days in a few places within Puntland and Somaliland as well as the coastal areas of southern regions in Somalia.
The cumulative rainfall forecast for the week which ends on 21 May 2017 shows light to moderate in parts of Somaliland, Puntland and coastal areas of southern Somalia including the Ethiopian highlands. Most of the rains are expected towards the end of the week. Other parts of the country will remain dry during the forecast period. The river levels are also expected to rise given the forecast.
The late onset of seasonal rains (March-May) has affected central, northwestern and southeastern Kenya, Uganda’s Karamoja region, and southern and central Somalia.
Flash floods are ongoing in Somalia’s Bari, Madung and Bay regions. FAO SWALIM expects increased water levels in the Juba and Shabelle river basins.
In Kenya , torrential rains have caused floods and landslides in Kwale, Mombasa, Taita Taveta and Garissa counties, including in Dadaab camp.
At least six people were killed and nine others injured when rival clan militias clashed in central Somalia, residents and community elders said on Saturday.
The militiamen belonging to the Air and Duduble sub-clans started fighting early Saturday morning in Labi-Aano village, 45 km east of Dhuusamareeb. The fight is over a dispute and clan vendetta.
Early May rainfall below average in central regions
Rains intensify across the region in late April, early May
Late season rains intensified across the region during the past several weeks, reducing rainfall deficits across some drought-affected areas of the Eastern Horn. While these rains are likely to contribute to improvements in cropping prospects and pasture and water availability in some areas, flooding has already resulted in damage in localized areas of Kenya, and may affect parts of Ethiopia and southern Somalia in the coming weeks.
Over half the population facing acute food insecurity
(IPC 2, 3 and 4)
2/3 of people in IPC 3 & 4 are in rural areas. 9 in 10 of those facing famine (IPC 4) are rural
People displaced due to drought since November 2016
Time it takes for rural people to become self-sufficient again after being displaced
- Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.
by Sadia Kidwai
Many of Dadaab’s residents are entirely dependent on the food rations they receive from NGOs. But funding for food aid has reduced dramatically
Last month I visited Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya - one of the world’s largest refugee camps and home to tens of thousands of Somalis. It is there in the Ifo sub-camp that Islamic Relief is responsible for providing primary health care and education for 70,000 people.
The London Conference on Somalia took place at Lancaster House on 11 May 2017, co-chaired by the UK, the Federal Republic of Somalia, the United Nations and the African Union, and attended by 42 friends and partners of Somalia. The Federal Republic of Somalia’s delegation was led by His Excellency President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo and included representatives of the Federal Member States.