Nigeria – North-East: Humanitarian Emergency Situation Report No. 12, 31 May 2017

This report is produced by OCHA in collaboration with humanitarian partners. It covers the period from 16 May to 31 May 2017. It does not include information on the operations of actors that are not part of the Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP).

Highlights

  • More than 12,000 persons returned from Minawao refugee camp in Cameroon to Nigeria through Banki between 9 April and 22 May alone. These recent, unexpected cross-border and secondary movements have stretched resources to the limit in Banki and Pulka, in particular food, safe water and shelter and conditions at reception centres have been dire. Ad-hoc relief was provided by humaniarian partners to cope with the new arrivals.

  • To decongest camps in Banki and Pulka, the Borno State Government and humanitarian partners are assessing response capacity for relocating up to 20,000 IDPs to two new camps to be established in Bama and Gwoza.

  • Due to a 74 per cent funding gap, and based on vulnerability assessments, the Food Security sector has had to reprioritize the needs and the response in addition to cutting rations in certain areas.

  • With the onset of the rainy season, recent wind and rain storms have damaged and/or destroyed hundreds of shelters, latrines and learning centres, causing a lot of distress for displaced families. Due to shelter shortages, many are still sleeping outside, completely exposed to the elements (raingfalls, sandstorms, sun…).

  • The deployment of humanitarian hubs continues and was discussed during a Hub task force meeting: procurement of prefabs and security upgrade for Maiduguri, modalities of use of the newly-opened Gwoza hub, obtaining security clearance for Ngala, imminent completion of the Bama hub, and breaking of the ground for the Dikwa hub expected to happen on 12 June. Planning continued for Monguno, Damboa, Damasak, Banki and Gubio.

8.5 million people in dire need of life-saving aid in Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe

5.2 million people are food insecure with the onset of the rainy and lean season

204,500 Nigerian refugees remain in Niger, Cameroon and Chad

5.9 million people require emergency health care in Borno, Adamawa, Yobe Yobe

848,141 people have received WASH assistance since January

Situation Overview

The period under review was characterized by important returns of refugees from Cameroon compounding the situation on ground, especially in Banki and Pulka. Through community engagement exercises, it appeared that these spontaneous refugee returns seemed to have been triggered by inaccurate information circulating in Minawao camps on impending camp closures, reduction of food rations and a stoppage of basic services. This caused panic amongst the refugee population and culminated in spontaneous returns.

On 22, 27 and 31 May, three organized convoys went to Pulka through Banki with about 3,700 women, children and men. Protection concerns are that these Nigerian refugees are returning to areas which are not safe and that such returns belie the voluntary nature of the repatriation. In Pulka, basic services are overstretched, exacerbated by inadequate shelters, acute water shortage and insufficient sanitation, health and education facilities. Food, CCCM/Shelter, Protection, Health and WASH partners coordinated their immediate response and focused on delivering emergency relief while doing advocacy with the Government for the temporary suspension of the movements to Pulka and potential relocation to other sites where resources are less strained.

The second major development of the reporting period is the deteriorating food security situation. With the imminent rainy season and with a funding gap of 74 per cent, based on vulnerability assessments, the Food Security sector has had to reprioritize the needs and the response in addition to cutting rations in certain areas.

Additionally, on 30 May, the Market Monitoring Report for Borno and Yobe states was released with key findings: in Borno, the Survival Minimum Expenditure Basket (SMEB, calculated for 2,100 kcal/per person) for a family of five people increased by 9.1 per cent from March to April; in Yobe, the SMEB increased by 1.2 per cent over the same period. The rising cost of the food basket in Borno State is driven by sustained increases in the prices of cowpea, peanuts, and sorghum. Paired with the low purchasing power of households, this further hampers food access for displaced and poor households in the two crisis-affected states.

On other sectors, humanitarian partners continue to address the most pressing needs and are starting to implement early recovery activities, amid major challenges such as insufficient funding, the onset of the rainy season, ongoing insecurity, and lack of access.

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