Humanitarian situation in Angola - reporting period: 16-31 Dec 2002

Critical Issues

  • More than 74,300 persons become inaccessible to humanitarian partners due to mine incidents in Bié, Kuando Kubango and Malanje Provinces.

  • More than half of returnee populations are without food assistance due to access and logistic constraints in Bié Province.

  • Recent mine incidents in Mavinga town in Kuando Kubango Province affect humanitarian operations.

  • More than 1,800 displaced persons were reportedly transported between 21 - 23 December from Luanda to Malanje Province.

Provincial Update

Bié: Approximately 26,000 persons were cut-off from humanitarian assistance in Chinguar, Chitembo and Belo Horizonte following several anti-tank mine incidents that occurred during the month on the roads leading to these areas.

According to Government authorities and humanitarian partners, populations are in critical need in the inaccessible areas of Chimuco and villages between Gamba and Nharea, and the communes of Sanda, Caiueira and Chiuca in Catabola Municipality. More than 50 percent of the returnees have not received food aid due to access and logistical constraints. Access and logistic constraints are also hampering the delivery of humanitarian assistance to the gathering areas (GAs) and the transportation of demobilised soldiers and their family members. Three hundred and seventy-seven persons, including 103 demobilised and 274 family members, have left the GAs for their areas of origin, and 622 persons, including 128 demobilised soldiers and 494 family members, have arrived from GAs in other provinces.

More than 108,000 people in the province have returned to their areas of origin. A survey on voluntary return conducted by provincial authorities in Kuito IDP camps indicates that return movements are likely to decrease until the end of the rainy season in April or May.

Huíla Province: On 19 December, the Government began distributing resettlement kits to demobilised soldiers returning to locations in Huíla Province during a ceremony attended by the Minister of Social Assistance and Reinsertion, Jo=E3o Baptista Kussumua. By the end of December, resettlement kits had been distributed to 5,568 demobilised soldiers.

Kuando Kubango Province: Humanitarian partners have expressed concern over mine infestation in Mavinga town, where several mine incidents have occurred near inhabited houses. On 19 December, a woman stepped on a mine while making a temporary drain to divert rainwater around her house in the center of the town. Demining agencies are preparing to begin mine clearance in Mavinga. The roads to Lomba Ponte and Lomba Ndiema, located 22 km from Mavinga town, are high priorities for clearance. Approximately 12,500 have not received food assistance since November due to mine infestation along the roads.

Two hundred people have been moved from the transit center in Menongue to several resettlement and return areas in the province. An additional 123 new arrivals from Capembe GA, Huambo Province and Namibia have been registered at the center. The total number of inhabitants in the transit center decreased from 210 to 133 at the end of December.

Lunda Sul Province: According to provincial authorities, more than 1,500 persons who returned to Cazoa and Cazage, located along the road between Dala and Muconda, are in urgent need of food assistance. Both of these areas are currently inaccessible due to seasonal rains. In addition, 3,741 new returnees were registered for humanitarian assistance in 17 villages along the road Saurimo - Dala.

Partners distributed cassava cuttings to 6,505 returnee families in Muconda Municipality. General food distributions for December were completed for more than 9,000 people in the GAs of Peso Velho and Tchinegi.

Malanje Province: Following an anti-tank mine incident on 24 December on the road Malanje - Cambondo, seven km from Malanje town, 27,435 returnees in Quela and Caculama Municipalities and 8,407 people in Damba GA have become inaccessible to humanitarian partners. The incident resulted in seven deaths and three injuries.

According to provincial authorities, between 21 - 23 December, 1,882 returnees from Luanda were transported to Malanje. The majority were temporarily sheltered at Katepa transit centre before being moved to their areas of origin in several municipalities. Due to access constraints, 116 of the returnees going to Kunda dia Base Municipality were temporarily resettled in Quela and 44 persons going to Marimba, Cahombo and Massango Municipalities remained at Katepa transit centre.

Provincial authorities also reported that movements of demobilised persons from the GAs began. One hundred and forty persons were transported to Luanda, Kuanza Norte and Bengo Provinces and Malanje town.

Moxico Province: Humanitarian partners operating in Luau are concerned about demobilised soldiers and their family members from Calala GA who are temporarily sheltered in an old building waiting for transport to their final destinations.

Five health facilities run by humanitarian agencies in Moxico Municipality received medical supplies to cover needs during the month of December. Three of the facilities have recently been rehabilitated.


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