Cameroon + 1 more

UNICEF Cameroon Humanitarian Situation Report No. 1 - January 2021

Situation Report
Originally published



▪ Since mid-December 2020, due to political violence, over 4,000 Central African Republic civilians sought refuge in the East Region of Cameroon among Garoua-Boulaï, Kentzou and Gari-Gombo churches or host families.

▪ Cameroon remains the second country most impacted by the Lake Chad Basin crisis. Children are at heightened risk of recruitment for Person Borne Improvised Engine Device (PBIED) attacks.

▪ In the North-West and South-West regions a total of 5,147 children under 11 months (2,619 girls and 2,528 boys) received catch-up vaccination.

▪ In the Far-North region, 105,240 boys and girls are now attending classes in schools, where teachers have been equipped to provide psychosocial support and/or lead on conflict and disaster risk reduction activities.

▪ UNICEF Cameroon’s 2021 Humanitarian Action for Children appeal is costed at US$ 83,074,000. The HAC 2021 targets 1.1 million people, of whom, 869,000 are children.

Funding Overview and Partnerships

In 2021, UNICEF Cameroon is appealing for US$83,074,000 in support of a lifesaving and protection-based response for children and women affected by humanitarian crisis in Cameroon. The COVID-19 emergency has been incorporated into the HAC 2021 appeal. As of January 2021, UNICEF has not received any funding. However, carry -over funds from 2020 have helped to bridge immediate needs in the first month of the year.

Situation Overview and Humanitarian Needs

As of January 2021, there have been 30,740 cumulative cases and 474 deaths confirmed of COVID-19 with a 1.6 percent fatality rate. Over, 6.2 million people, including 3 million children remain in need of humanitarian assistance These needs are the result of protracted and new conflict displacements in the North-West (NW), South-West (SW) and Far-North regions and new refugee influxes in the East and Far-North regions. Seasonal risks such as floods and disease outbreaks, including communicable diseases such as measles and Cholera remain real threats to already vulnerable families.

In January 2021, violent clashes between government forces and non-state armed groups (NSAGs) in the North-West (NW) and South-West (SW) regions remained a root cause for population displacement. As of January 2021, according to UN OCHA, 7,017 conflict-affected people fled across both regions, in majority to the South-West (5,881 – 84 percent ).

Parallelly, 1,760 returned to their regions of origin either in the North-West or the South-West regions. In total, in Cameroon, there are 700,000 internally displaced people (IDP) 360,547 returnees and another 301,883 IDPs in other regions (5,301 in Adamawa, 52,931 in the Center, 80,925 in Littoral and 162,726 in West).
In the NW/SW regions, the delivery of humanitarian aid was impacted by 15 days of movement restrictions (‘ghost towns’ and ‘Lockdowns’) and volatile insecurity - including crossfire and the use of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). Since mid-January, violent attacks were linked to the African Nations Championship (CHAN 2021) with some teams based in Buea and playing in Limbe in the South-West (SW) region. While one school in three remains non-operational (4,185), alarming attacks against teachers and children continued on school premises or on their way to school (gun shooting, arson, and abductions).

Since December 27,2020 due to the general instability and violence linked to the Central African Republic Presidential Elections, over 6,6921 Central African Republic civilians sought refuge in the East Region of Cameroon among GarouaBoulaï, Gado Site, Kentzou, Boulembe, Gari-Gombo, Ndokayo and Betare Oya churches or host families, among them 52 percent children and 54 percent are women. Some have also settled in Sarambi artisanal gold mine site. This influx was the single largest influx since 2014. Although the security situation in Central African Republic (CAR) has not improved, a stabilisation in the rate of new arrivals has been observed.

Cameroon is the second country most affected by the Lake Chad Basin Crisis. The United Nations Department for Safety and Security (UNDSS) reported on-going attacks on civilians in the Far-North region, causing spontaneous displacements with over 47 civilians killed in January 2021. The largest number of attacks on civilians were reported in Mayo-Sava division followed by Mayo-Tsanaga division in the Far North region. Children have continued to be exposed directly to the impact of violent attacks, displacement and the loss of caregivers and protective community networks. In addition, children continue to be the victims of unexploded remnants of war and abduction for purposes of recruitment into armed groups, including as suicide bombers. A dramatic increase in the use of children in Person Borne Improvised Engine Device (PBIED) attacks has been observed in the Mayo -Tsanaga division, with at least 5 occurrences only in the district of Mayo-Moskota. Abductions of boys, girls and women remain a major concern with 12 cases reported in January.