Somalia: Drought Response - Situation Report No. 8 (as of 16 May 2017)

Highlights

  • 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.

  • Drought has caused the largest outbreak of cholera Somalia has seen in the last five years with over 38,000 cases and 683 deaths so far in 2017, according to WHO. Nearly 7,694 suspected cases of measles have been reported in 2017.

  • The Gu rainfall started two weeks later than normal and has been below average in all areas, except in the northeast where rainfall totals have been near average.

  • The revised Humanitarian Response Plan was launched on 10 May. The revised HRP is seeking US$1.5 billion to reach 5.5 million people with life-saving assistance in 2017.

  • The London Somalia Conference held on 11 May has called for strong partnerships and additional funding for further scale-up of the humanitarian response in Somalia.

Situation Overview

To respond to the growing needs, humanitarian partners in Somalia have revised the Humanitarian Response Plan for 2017. The revised HRP was presented at the London Somalia conference on 11 May. It seeks US$1.5 billion to reach 5.5 million people with life-saving assistance in 2017. In response to the early alarm that Somalia is at risk of famine at the beginning of the year, donors had as of 11 May, generously provided $634 million since the beginning of the year. The remaining gap is of $875 million.

The humanitarian situation in Somalia has deteriorated further and an elevated risk of famine in 2017 persists in some parts. The number of people in need of humanitarian assistance has increased to 6.7 million people, up from 6.2 million, according to the latest projections by the FAO-managed Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit. A total of 3.2 million people are expected to face Crisis and Emergency (IPC Phase 3 and 4) levels of food insecurity through June. The prolonged drought has led to lack of water and the largest outbreak of cholera Somalia has seen in the last five years with nearly 38,000 cases and almost 683 deaths so far in 2017, according to WHO. With the beginning of the rainy season and projected flooding, these numbers are expected to increase to 50,000 cases by the end of June. Cases of measles are also on the rise with over 7,000 cases reported this year, 65 per cent of them affecting children under age 5.

The latest UNHCR-led Protection and Return Monitoring Network report indicates that the number of drought related displaced people has increased to 683,000 people since November 2016. This includes an estimated 131,000 people displaced in April 2017 alone. Of these, more than 55,000 people arrived in Baidoa, reflecting a reduction by 22 per cent compared to March. Overall, over 156,000 people are displaced in Baidoa. Over 39,000 people arrived in Mogadishu in April. In Bay and Bakool regions there are reports of a small number of drought-displaced people, mainly men, who have started to return home with the onset of the Gu rainy season. Humanitarian partners and authorities are planning to conduct a return intention survey among the drought-displaced people in Baidoa.

The Gu rainfall started two weeks later than normal and has been below average in all areas, except in the northeast where rainfall totals have been near average. Pasture and water resources have begun to improve with recent rains and it is expected that livestock body conditions and value will slowly increase through June. The cumulative rainfall forecast for the week ending 21 May, 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. Following the rains in the basins in the last few weeks, the river levels along the two rivers rose significantly and are currently above normal levels at this time of the year. Given the rainfall forecast and the high river levels, there is a high risk of flooding along the middle and lower reaches of Shabelle River. Flooding in Middle Shabelle has been reported in Madheere Village and has caused damage to large amounts of cropped area and some displacement.

Some 37,930 suspected AWD/ cholera cases and 683 deaths have been recorded in 52 districts across 14 regions since the beginning of 2017. Cholera alerts have been reported in Galgadud, Gedo,Togdheer, Bakool and Middle Juba region and other inaccessible areas. The verification of these alerts is a major challenge due to insecurity. Nearly 7,694 suspected measles cases have been reported in 2017.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:

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