Ethiopia - South Sudan cross corridor road assessment mission report (as of 11 July 2012)

from World Food Programme, Logistics Cluster
Published on 11 Jul 2012 View Original


Date(s): 06 June – 13 June, 2012

Location(s):Gambella - Metar - Burbe - Pugnido-Gog - Mizan - Raad -Boma -Akobo - Dima - Jimma

Participating Agencies- Logistics Cluster Republic of South Sudan (RoSS), WFP Ethiopia

Participant (s)- Venkat Dheeravath (Logistics Cluster), Teklemariam Moges (WFP), Daryll Ainsworth (WFP/Red R), Belay Seyoum (WFP), and Naser Jamel (WFP)

Security: Level 1, 2, & 3

Mission Objectives

  1. Assess, using GPS and SDI-T tools, Gambella - Metar - Burbe - Pugnido-Gog - Mizan - Raad -Boma -Akobo - Dima - Jimma road sections for humanitarian access.
  2. Identify exact stretches of damaged roads, bridges, and culverts to repair and understand better the access for returnees, Common Transport Service (CTS) and for all humanitarian community/INGO’s/NNGO’s/UN.
  3. Assess the possibility of using the Gambella Road corridor from Djibouti into Upper Nile, Jonglei, and Eastern Equatoria states, RoSS.
  4. Explore river corridors into RoSS from Gambella.


During the rainy season which lasts from May to December, the key road corridors (Gambella- Pagak; Gambella – Jikou; Jimma –Raad) from Ethiopia into South Sudan are not passable for all traffic as the road becomes increasingly muddy and impassable. The river corridors are used during this period to bring food and Non-Food Items (NFIs) into South Sudan from Metar/Itang/ Gambella ports through Sobat River via Nasser to Malakal. During May and June, due to low water levels, only boats with cargo capacity less than 25 mt can operate. The access roads leading to the river, except Gambella, are muddy and passable only after two dry days for 4WD/trucks/trailers. The new Metar to Akobo Road corridor is presently under construction and the project is set to finish in 2014.

To explore the possibility of using Gambella and Jimma Road and river corridors into the Republic of RoSS, the Logistics Cluster and WFP Logistics (RoSS and Ethiopia) initiated a Cross Border Road Assessment Mission (CBRAM). Access points are located in the RoSS states of Upper Nile, Jonglei, and Eastern Equatoria, connecting from Ethiopia which further connects from Djibouti port via Addis Ababa. This mission also aimed to fill the gap of Logistical GIS features and to map out all road constraints, bridge, culvert, ports, and missing villages in the database using GPS and SDI-T tools. On 05 June 2012 the CBRAM team met with the Ethiopian Road Authority’s (ERA) Chief Planning Officer in Addis Ababa to gather information regarding road construction plans towards the RoSS border and within RoSS to connect border towns to areas such as Boma. Also the team conducted short meetings with the ERA and road construction companies at a regional level and on company construction site.

The mission team (5 people) travelled approximately 1,500 km from Gambella (Ethiopia) by road towards RoSS borders (Akobo, Burbe crossing, Pochalla, and Boma) in the Gambella region, and further travelled to the Mizan and Jimma region from 06 June to 13 June 2012.