Delayed and below-average rainfall has affected low altitude areas of the country, particularly the Northern Lowlands (northern Kirundo and Muyinga provinces). The latest multisector rapid assessment showed that 17% of households surveyed (about 36,400 households) in the Northern Lowlands had more than 50% of their crops destroyed by dryness. Due to dry conditions, combined with above-average food prices and decreased income sources related to COVID-19 restrictions, the area is expected to continue to face Stressed (IPC Phase 2) food security outcomes until May. Some poor and very poor households will face Crisis (IPC Phase 3). Households depending on agriculture as main source of income (90% of the Burundi population) are particularly vulnerable to food insecurity and loss of livelihoods.
Southern African countries have had a surge of COVID-19 cases since mid-December, leading to the reintroduction of mitigation measures including lockdowns, border closures, and movement restrictions. South Africa, Lesotho, Malawi, and Zimbabwe recorded the highest numbers ofnew COVID-19 cases. While agricultural activities are generally continuing, COVID-19 measures are impacting other economic activities and labour migration, likely resulting in decreased income and remittances. In Lesotho, COVID-19 containment measures have already had significant negative effects on the economy. The reintroduction of a lockdown on 12 January and restrictions on domestic and cross-border travels risk further consequences on the economy, livelihoods, and food security, especially for poor urban households that depend on daily and weekly wages. Over 582,000 people (40% of population assessed) in Lesotho are expected to face Crisis or higher levels of food insecurity (IPC Phase 3+) between October 2020 and March 2021.
On 1 February, the Myanmar military staged a coup and ordered a year-long state of emergency under Section 418 of the 2008 Constitution. Following the announcement, communication networks were disrupted, including data connection and phone services. A nationwide curfew is in place between 20.00 and 06.00. Yangon International Airport is closed until 31 May. As at 2 February, no violence has been reported. Several humanitarian organisations decided to stop operations while they assess the situation, including potential access constraints. People in Myanmar continue to experience protracted and short-term displacement due to conflict and insecurity, mainly in Rakhine, Shan, Kachin, and Chin states. Over 1 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance, particularly in Rakhine, where 470,000 non-displaced stateless Rohingya have extensive unmet needs.It is unclear whether this event will have an impact on the security situation in Myanmar and how it will affect humanitarian needs.