West and Central Africa: Weekly Regional Humanitarian Snapshot (7 - 13 February 2017)
FUNDING GAP THREATENS FOOD ASSISTANCE TO CAR REFUGEES
Lack of financial resources is jeopardizing WFP and partners’ ability to provide livesaving food assistance to the refugees in eastern Cameroon, leaving a US$16 million gap in funding. A complete gap is expected from June onwards, pending new food consignments. Since last October, a decline in funding had already forced WFP to cut food and cash assistance by half to some 156,000 CAR refugees, who are now surviving on a minimal food ration.
HEPATITIS E OUTBREAK WORSENS
Hundreds of people could die in southeastern Chad as a months-long outbreak of hepatitis E worsens, MSF warned on 9 February, recording 70 cases and 11 deaths since September. Some 885 people in the Salamat region have been treated for symptoms of jaundice, which can indicate hepatitis E. Most patients are likely to be suffering from hepatitis E, the aid group said.
The death toll from the outbreak could be higher due to cases which may not have been treated in health facilities, according to the World Health Organization
93 CASES OF MEASLES CONFIRMED
93 measles cases have been confirmed since the beginning of the year in the affected districts of Nzérékoré, Guékedou, Coyah, Dubréka, Fria, Kindia and four communes in the capital Conakry. The Ministry of Health with support from UNICEF, ALIMA and other partners has immediately initiated vaccination campaigns in the affected regions. The outbreak is a direct consequence of the limited vaccination coverage during the Ebola outbreak which seriously affected the country’s health system in 2014-2015.
PROJECTED RISE IN CONFLICTRELATED NEEDS
Humanitarian actors project that needs are likely to increase in the coming months. Last year, the number of displaced people increased from 1.6 to more than 2.1 million.
Humanitarian organizations are already responding to respond to violent clashes in the southeastern province of Tanganyika, in the three provinces of Kasai and to the needs of new refugees from South Sudan in the north-eastern part of the country.
Measles and cholera have become major recurring health issues. On 9 February, the humanitarian community and the Congolese authorities launched an appeal for US$748 million to assist 6.7 million people in 2017.
ALMOST 150,000 PEOPLE FOUND FOOD INSECURE
Over 148,500 persons – 8 per cent of the population - are food insecure and 0.6 per cent severely food insecure in The Gambia, according to a WFP report, an increase from 5.6 per cent in 2011. Rising food prices and natural disasters are the most prominent factors that have negatively affected Gambian households’ food access and put them at risk. On 9 February, the European Union allocated €75 million as an immediate support package to address markets and socio-economic development of the country, including food insecurity, unemployment and infrastructure.
OVER 10,000 DISPLACED PEOPLE RETURN TO DAMASAK
Over the past two weeks, more than 10,000 displaced people and refugees have returned to the Damasak local government area in the north of Borno state. The majority of them (70 per cent) return from neighbouring Niger and the rest from communities nearby. In recent weeks, an average of 100 families has been returning to Damasak every day
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