UNICEF Ethiopia Humanitarian Situation Report #5 – Reporting Period: 6 - 19 April 2017

Report
from UN Children's Fund
Published on 19 Apr 2017

Highlights

  • In 2017, so far, 51,184 children have been admitted for treatment of severe acute malnutrition (SAM). There is an 18 per cent increase in SAM admissions from January (23,523) to February (27,661). Drought affected areas show a worrying level of SAM admissions.

  • With worsening food and water shortage and rise in acute watery diarrhoea (AWD) outbreak, the malnutrition situation is expected to aggravate in coming months. Rapid response team personnel are deployed to strengthen AWD management and UNICEF is collaborating with WHO to provide operational guidance on managing SAM cases with AWD in the Somali region.

  • In response to the AWD outbreak in Somali region, the Regional Water Bureau with UNICEF support has started mass chlorination of water sources.

Situation Overview and Humanitarian Needs

In March 2017, below normal rainfall was recorded in Afar, southern parts of Oromia, SNNP and most of Somali region. Seasonal rainfall performance to-date has been erratic and below normal although it is anticipated to improve during mid-April to May. The National Meteorological Agency predicts that rainfall in much of the Belg-growing areas of the country will be close to normal with a possibility of below normal rainfall in some areas. Below normal rainfall is expected to be more pronounced in southern and south-eastern parts of the country, where Belg is the major rainy season.

The National Disaster Risk Management Commission (NDRMC) is currently revising the estimated number of people in need of emergency food aid. Findings of a joint rapid assessment by WFP, OCHA, IOM and UNICEF indicate that there are increasing needs beyond those identified in the 2017 Humanitarian Requirements Document (HRD). In addition to the number of beneficiaries in the 2017 HRD, in Oromia, more than 1.1 million and in SNNP 122,000 people are receiving food aid. The increase in food aid beneficiaries is partly attributed to Meher harvest loss due to frost in Borena, East Hararge, Guji, West Guji as well as in the lowlands of Bale zones in Oromia region and the South Omo zone of SNNP region. Humanitarian needs are also expected to increase in areas where Belg rains are expected to perform poorly, particularly in south-eastern parts of the country.

Refugees continue to arrive in Ethiopia, the majority being South Sudanese, Somali and Eritrean. Between 1 January and 13 April 2017, 4,768 new Somali asylum seekers were registered as refugees and relocated to the Kobe, Hilaweyn, Buramino, Bokolmanyo and Melkadida refugee camps in Ethiopia’s Somali region. Of the total new arrivals, 70.4 per cent are children. In Gambella region, between 1 and 12 April, 3,346 South Sudanese refugees arrived bringing the total number of new arrivals since September 2016 to 81,720. In March 2017 there was high influx of refugees with 16,274 arrivals of South Sudanese refugees compared to 5,570 arrivals in February 2017. Of the new arrivals registered since September 2016, 65 per cent are children, including 18,297 unaccompanied and separated children. In October 2016, UNHCR and the Ethiopian Administration for Refugees and Returnees Affairs (ARRA) opened a new camp, Nguenyyiel, which is currently accommodating 54,177 refugees. A new site to be developed as a refugee camp has been identified in an area bordering Benishangul-Gumuz and Oromia regions, with a capacity to accommodate 30,000 refugees.