UNICEF South Sudan Humanitarian Situation Report #100, 16 December – 31 December 2016
• Humanitarian access in the Greater Equatoria region is severely restricted due to insecurity, significantly impacting the ability of humanitarian organizations to deliver life-saving assistance.
• The nutrition situation in South Sudan in 2016 was worse than previous years, and since 2013 there has been a 350% increase in the number of cases of children under five years with severe acute malnutrition (SAM). Overall in 2016, UNICEF and partners have admitted 203,335 children with SAM into therapeutic feeding programmes, a 50% increase from 2015.
• With UNICEF Child Protection facing a 71% funding gap, the number of reunifications of separated children with their families in 2016 was less than half of that in 2015 as a result of limited resources.
Situation in Numbers
1.83 million People internally displaced since 15 December 2013 (OCHA South Sudan Humanitarian Bulletin, 21 December 2016)
1.17 million South Sudanese refugees in neighbouring countries since December 2013 (UNHCR South Sudan Situation Information Sharing Portal, 23 December 2016)
Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs
The December 2016 food security outlook shows that extreme levels of food insecurity are expected in South Sudan in the first half of 2017. As a result of disrupted planting and harvesting caused by insecurity, coupled with high prices and volatile trade, food availability and access in the country is expected to be lower than normal. Northern Bahr el Ghazal and areas of Unity and Central Equatoria states are already at emergency levels of food insecurity. With insecurity restricting access for humanitarian assistance in many of these areas, the population may exhaust their coping mechanisms and descend into catastrophic levels of food insecurity. As regular livelihood activities continue to be disrupted across the country and with food availability constrained, high levels of acute malnutrition are expected in the first half of 2017.
As the security situation continues to deteriorate in the Greater Equatoria region, the number of South Sudanese fleeing into neighbouring Uganda, Kenya, Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of Congo is rising, with 7,046 people recorded to have crossed the border in a single day.
While the Greater Upper Nile (Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity states) used to be considered the main conflict-affected region in South Sudan, approximately 56% of South Sudanese refugees are now from the three Equatoria states. Since July 2016, more than 394,500 refugees have entered Uganda alone; over 86% of the refugees are women and children. Uganda is hosting the highest number of South Sudanese refugees in the country, which has reached over 600,000.
Greater Equatoria now ranks as the second highest region in the country in terms of people in need of humanitarian assistance, which is estimated at 1.9 million. The region is second only to Greater Upper Nile, where a total of 2.9 million people are in need of aid. Greater Equatoria also ranks as the region with the highest need for the establishment of a protective environment.