Bangladesh

Bangladesh: Floods Appeal No. 20/2000 Situation Report No. 10


Programme extension to 31 May
period covered: 11 March - 30 April 2001

Given delays in programme implementation, the flood relief operation has been extended to 31 May 2001, by which time it is expected that distributions of food and non-food items under phases III and IV will have been completed. Procurement of goods has been finalised, together with delivery to the warehouse in Jessore. With the approach of the cyclone season, the Bangladesh Red Crescent Society (BDRCS) is focusing on disaster preparedness measures.

The context

As of August 2000, Bangladesh suffered from early monsoonal flooding caused mainly by water draining from north-east India, Nepal and Bhutan into the Bay of Bengal through the major river basins of Bangladesh. This flooding caused massive river erosion which forced around 1.5 million people to flee their homes. On 29 August, a tidal surge in the Bay of Bengal caused severe damage to Sandwip island and nearby areas. At the end of September 2000, unusually high rainfall in the upper catchment areas of the Ichamati and Sonai Rivers caused extensive flooding in south-west Bangladesh., affecting an estimated 2.7 million people in six districts. In these areas, unlike other parts of Bangladesh, floods had not occurred for over 60 years. Therefore, the population was not prepared for such a crisis which resulted in extensive material damage. Although much of the flood waters receded soon after, in six sub-districts of three of these districts a combination of low-lying lands, a lack of outlets to drain water, and silting up of drainage channels left large areas of land under stagnant water. An estimated 1.4 million people remained in perilous conditions in fragile temporary shelters, with few belongings, facing the cold winter temperatures with little warm clothing. Overall, these monsoon-related disasters have left over 4 million people homeless.

The Bangladesh Red Crescent Society, with the support of the Federation, has taken the lead in supporting the efforts of the government of Bangladesh in the provision of relief and rehabilitation assistance in each of the affected districts.

Latest events

The attention of the international and national media has been focused on the recent border incidents between Bangladesh and India, in particular in Kurigam district in the north where an incident occurred for the first time on 18 April 2001, affecting the lives of families living along the border area. Tension has reportedly been growing along the Bangladesh-Indian border except in the south (Bay of Bengal). As the armed forces on both sides are building up their troops, the people of the frontier villages have already started to leave their houses.

In response to the request of the BDRCS Kurigram unit for emergency relief assistance, a survey team was formed and sent from the BDRCS headquarters in Dhaka to the field in order to make a damage assessment. The findings of the team were presented to the Federation with a request for assistance with food, kitchen utensils and house repair materials for 76 families whose houses, fruit trees and livestock were burned and rice and potato fields damaged.

As for the south western districts, rehabilitation of destroyed housing units continues to be a problem for the vast majority of the affected population. Despite promises given by the government of Bangladesh to provide grants of Tk 1,000 to all affected families, no disbursement of grants has taken place to date. Although the majority of the affected population had managed to build makeshift huts, with the onset of the north westerly winds, many of these houses have been blown away, making the flood affected populations homeless once more.

Due to severe hot spells which hit Bangladesh during the month of April, together with scarcity of water, the national media reports that over 50,000 people have been registered as suffering from diarrhoea and 40 people have already died. The nine districts most affected by the outbreaks of diarrhoea are: Dhaka, Comilla, Noakhali, Barisal, Bagerhat, Bhola, Patuakhali, Feni and Pirojpur.

The political situation in the country has been tense during the reporting period. On 15 April, during the Bengali New Year celebration in the central park in Dhaka, a bomb went off killing eight and injuring dozens of innocent civilians who had come to celebrate their national holiday. The number of hartal days (national stoppages of motorised transport), also increased and over three weeks of April, the opposition party leaders called for nine hartal days. Forthcoming parliamentary elections, bringing significant increases in hartal days, continue to impede the implementation of relief operations.

Red Cross/Red Crescent action

Relief Programme

The implementation of the relief operation has been extended to 31 May 2001. Red Cross/Red Crescent relief assistance is being carried out in four phases:

As reported in situation report no. 9, phases I and II were successfully completed in January 2001. The following food relief items were distributed to 1,304,800 beneficiaries:

Rice - 532 MT

Chira - 160 MT

Gur - 720 MT

Dal - 232 MT

Phase III and Phase IV (non-food) items

The procurement process of relief items for phases III and IV has been successfully completed. All items have been procured and delivered to the central warehouse in Jessore, from where onward dispatch is organised by the BDRCS relief department to all eight districts for distribution to the affected population. During the reporting period, the BDRCS organised and successfully completed the distribution of sarees, lunghis and blankets. The majority of food items (rice and dal) has also been distributed and it is expected that food distribution will be completed during the first week of May in accordance with the distribution timetable prepared by BDRCS district branches.

As for the distribution of corrugated iron (CI) sheeting and plastic sheeting, all districts have prepared distribution plans and a schedule. Dispatch of CI and plastic sheeting from the central warehouse in Jessore to the respective districts started at the end of April and, according to the distribution plan, the distribution will commence during the first week of May. The BDCRS is expecting to complete the distribution by 15 May.

Allocation of food and non-food items for Phase III
Phase III and IV distribution March to May 2001


Name of the Unit
Phase III: Allocation food and non-food items
Phase IV: Allocation
No. of families
No. of beneficiaries
Rice (kg)
Dal (kg)
Lunghi
Children Sweater
Sarees
Rice
Dal
Blankets
CI Sheeting
Plastic Sheeting
Rajshahi District
20,000
4,000
2,000
2,100
2,000
2'000
2'800
1'300
5,700
31,920
Chapai-Nawabganj
20,000
4,000
2,000
2,400
2,000
2'000
2'800
1'500
5,800
32,480
Jhenidah
25,000
5,000
2,500
1,820
2,500
60'000
12'000
2'500
3'500
1'500
6,857
38,397
Meherpur
25,000
5,000
2,500
2,100
2,500
60'000
12'000
2'500
3'500
1'500
6,950
38,920
Chuadanga
40,000
8,000
4,000
3,000
4,000
140'000
28'000
3'500
4'900
3'000
11,000
61,600
Satkhira
60,000
12,000
7,000
6,000
7,000
215'000
43'000
7'000
8'400
5'000
17,500
98,000
Kustia
20,000
4,000
2,000
1,820
2,000
50'000
10'000
2'000
2'800
1'500
5,607
31,397
Jessore
40,000
8,000
4,000
3,000
4,000
160'000
32'000
3'500
4'900
3'000
11,000
61,600
Total:
250,000
50,000
26,000
22,240
26,000
685'000
126'000
25'000
33'600
18'300
72,813
394,315


Medical component

As previously reported, this activity was successfully completed in December 2000. A total of 150,547 beneficiaries received health assistance from 22 medical teams.

Outstanding needs

The appeal is 98.6 per cent covered and there are no outstanding needs.

External relations - Government/UN/NGOs/Media

The BDRCS/Federation continues to liaise with government agencies, UN agencies, DFID, NGOs, diplomatic missions and the Association of Development Agencies in Bangladesh (ADAB) which co-ordinates the relief activities of NGOs and the media.

The Federation delegation also continues to participate in the Local Consultative Group (LCG) on Disaster and Emergency Response. The LCG’s objective is to put in place and implement better operational systems to ensure a more co-ordinated response from the government of Bangladesh, donors, international organisations and NGOs in the event of sudden natural disasters.

Contributions

See Annex 1 for details.

Conclusion

It is expected that the 2000 flood relief operation will be successfully completed by the end of May, following which the final report will be produced. It is important to mention that the cyclone season is fast approaching. The BDRCS and the Federation are focusing on the National Society’s disaster preparedness programmes in order to be able to respond quickly to emerging cyclone/flood situations.

Hiroshi Higashiura
Head
Asia & Pacific Department

Peter Rees-Gildea
Head a.i.
Relationship Management Department

This and other reports on Federation operations are available on the Federation's website: http://www.ifrc.org

BANGLADESH - FLOODS 2000
ANNEX 1
APPEAL No.20 /2000 PLEDGES RECEIVED
01.05.2001
DONOR
CATEGORY
QUANTITY
UNIT
VALUE CHF
DATE
COMMENT
CASH
TOTAL COVERAGE
REQUESTED IN APPEAL CHF
>
3'796'936
98.6%
AMERICAN - PRIVATE
20
USD
36
21.11.00
AUSTRIAN - RC
25' 000
EUR
38'933
20.09.00
BANGLADESH - PRIVATE
3'182
20.09.00
BRITISH - RC
45' 000
GBP
113'400
25.08.00
BRITISH - RC
55' 000
GBP
142'450
25.08.00
FOOD & OPERATIONAL NEEDS
BRITISH - RC
40' 000
GBP
100'000
23.10.00
RELIEF ITEMS
BRITISH - RC
60' 000
GBP
151'800
04.12.00
RELIEF ITEMS
CANADIAN - RC
20' 000
CAD
23'068
15.09.00
CHINESE - RC
20' 000
USD
35'470
21.09.00
DIRECT DONATION TO NS
DANISH - RC
277' 500
DKK
56'777
16.10.00
ECHO (01001)
500' 000
EUR
761'050
19.12.00
NON-FOOD ITEMS
FINNISH - RC
33' 637
EUR
52'864
24.08.00
FINNISH - RC
50' 456
EUR
77'087
27.10.00
GERMAN - RC
400' 000
DEM
312'440
23.10.00
CHINA ,'HONG KONG - PRIVATE
100' 000
BDT
3'284
20.09.00
ICELANDIC - RC
200' 000
ISK
4'295
22.09.00
IRANIAN - RC
50' 000
USD
88'675
24.10.00
JAPANESE - RC
162'000
24.08.00
KOREA, REPUBLIC - RC
20'000
25.08.00
KUWAIT - RC
7' 500
USD
13'301
01.11.00
LIECHTENSTEIN - RC
50'000
02.10.00
LUXEMBOURG - GOVT
5' 000' 000
LUF
189'340
10.10.00
NORWEGIAN - GOVT/RC
2' 157' 498
NOK
408'358
15.12.00
SINGAPORE - PRIVATE
50
USD
89
21.11.00
SWEDISH - GOVT/RC
1' 250' 000
SEK
233'875
18.08.00
FLOOD RELIEF OPERATION
SWISS - GOVT
100'000
11.10.00
EARMARKED FOR 140 MT RICE, 28 MT DAL
SWISS- GOVT
2' 432' 000
BDT
80'000
11.12.00
EARMARKED FOR 100 MT RICE, 20 MT DAL
SWISS - PRIVATE /ICRC
5'000
11.12.00
SUB/TOTAL RECEIVED IN CASH
3' 226'774
CHF
85.0%
KIND AND SERVICES (INCLUDING PERSONNEL)
DONOR
CATEGORY
QUANTITY
UNIT
VALUE CHF
DATE
COMMENT
CHINA, HONG KONG - GOVT/RC
2' 000' 000
HKD
453'886
20.11.00
RICE, DAL, TRANSPORTATION & DISTRIBUTION
IRANIAN - RC
37' 169
USD
63'652
23.09.00
TENTS, BLANKETS, RICE, TEA, OIL, CLOTHES, SLIPPERS, SOAP
SUB/TOTAL RECEIVED IN KIND/SERVICES
517'538
CHF
13.6%
ADDITIONAL TO APPEAL BUDGET
DONOR
CATEGORY
QUANTITY
UNIT
VALUE CHF
DATE
COMMENT
SUB/TOTAL RECEIVED
CHF
THE FOLLOWING PROJECTS ARE LINKED TO THIS APPEAL:
PBD526