Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso: 2009 Flooding Situation Report No. 2

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This report was issued by OCHA-Regional Office for West Africa. It covers the period 5-6 September.

HIGHLIGHTS / KEY PRIORITIES

- 8 people have died and 150,000 others have been affected by flooding in the capital Ouagadougou; 50% of the city is affected.

- A UN Disaster (UNDAC) arrived in the country on 4 September.

- The Government, UN agencies, NGOs and donors are actively involved in coordination response.

- WFP has started distribution of food covering 150,000 people for two weeks, while CRS and Africare have enough food to supplement for an additional 15 days.

- UNICEF has provided survival material to the authorities; UNFPA has provided "dignity kits" for women.

- UNDP has activated an emergency grant for $50,000.

II. Situation Overview

Whilst Burkina Faso suffers annual flooding during the rainy season unusually severe rains on 1st September when 263mm fell in 12 hours (according to the Burkina Faso Meteorological Department) caused widespread displacement within and around the capital, Ouagadougou. Floods have also occurred in neighbouring countries with an estimated 350,000 people affected in the West African region. The Government reported that all five districts of Ouagadougou had been affected and that 8 people have died. The fire service report that 50% of the city's territory has been affected.

According to the most recent assessment an estimated 48,000 people are sheltering in temporary accommodation such as schools, churches and public buildings. In many buildings the capacity is severely overstretched (especially sanitation). It is believed that the number of people staying with host families has significantly increased to at least 40,000. There is a need to ensure schools are vacated before the school year starts on 1 October.

Key infrastructure damaged includes:

- Central University Hospital

- Bridges and roads

- Schools

- Agricultural land - an FAO survey undertaken on 3 September identified the need to support the many small farmers affected by the floods with technical and livelihood support. It warns that many of these small farmers have no other source of income

- One electrical plant (normally supplying 10-20% of Ouagadougou's electricity) is out of use and undergoing essential repairs, however other plants are supplying sufficient electricity to cover this shortfall.

- One of the main water purification plants for the city (supplying 30% of the population) is out of use but needs are being covered by water from another plant outside the city.

Sanitation and hygiene are priority areas of concern.

The Burkina Faso Red Cross reported the following results of their survey of displaced living in temporary shelter. The full results of the survey should be available on 7 Sep and will include data on how households were affected; detailed needs and support received disaggregated by age and sex available.


*The figures in brackets represent data collected by the WFP.
District
No of
sites
Total affected
Ages
Households
People
0 to 5
6 to 11
11 to 18
Bogodogo
18
1,333
7,505
1,532
1,445
1,385
Signoghin
10
306
2,174
366
339
440
Baskuy
16
911
7,337
1,312
1,340
1,264
Nongremasson;
13
1,052
4,333
Boulmiougou;
32
* (25,000)
Total
89
3,602
* (48,000)

The Government of Burkina Faso has decided that population should be relocated to sustainable housing areas and to accompany them in this process and a plan is in preparation. Prior to this, the displaced population is to be relocated to 5 - 6 transition sites. These sites need to be planned and prepared. According to the representative of the Governor of Ouagadougou previous experience in floods in Ouagadougou indicates that the population is likely to remain in temporary sites for at least 3 months.

III. Humanitarian Needs and Response

Immediate needs that have identified include:

- Food – covered for 1 month by WFP, Africare and Catholic Relief Services.

- Shelter – overcrowded with men sleeping in the open air to allow women and children to use the buildings.

- Water and Sanitation – whilst most of the affected population appear to have access to potable water, the sanitation facilities are insufficient. Latrines and showers are needed [1,069 latrines (only100 exist at present), 430 showers (none at present)]. Solid waste management is also needed.

- NFIs – tents, cook sets, mosquito nets, blankets, sleeping mats, etc.

- Specific needs of babies and young children

- There is a need to assess the displaced populations in regard to protection issues and provide security at the temporary sites.

- There is a need to assess the environmental impact of the flooding.

- Disease awareness campaigns are needed now.

In addition site planners are required to assist with establishing the transition sites; medical kits should be made available to each site from 7 Sept; A Flash Appeal and CERF request should be drafted next week with the help of the regional office.

Disclaimer

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.