Africa weekly emergency situation update Vol. 2, No. 43-44

Report
from World Health Organization
Published on 30 Nov 2009
General Context

The crisis in DRC has been aggravated in the past weeks by ethnic clashes in the northern Equateur province which have led to the displacement of more than 80,000 people, more than half of them in the neighbouring Republic of Congo.

Pandemic A (H1N1): Twenty nine (29) countries are now affected in our Region with a total case load of 15,887 and 108 deaths as of 30th November 2009. Other humanitarian concerns include disease outbreaks, the complex emergencies in central African countries and the food crises in the horn of Africa.

Situation in Countries

Acute crises

CAR: Rebels of the Convention of patriots for Justice and Peace briefly took control of the key north central town of Ndele after an attack on Thursday the 26th of November 2009; the following day the national army reversed the situation and Ndele is now under their control. The situation is calm but 15 people were killed. In the same period attacks were reported on the Humanitarian compound in Birao; many NGOs and humanitarian actors have suspended their activities in Ndele as well as in Birao.

Cape Verde: Outbreak of Dengue: There is a progressive decrease in the incidence since three weeks. As of the 29th of November 2009, a total of 20,147 cases with 6 deaths were reported by the Ministry of Health of which 174 cases presented hemorrhagic signs. WHO continues its support in outbreak control activities.

Chad: Humanitarian assistance to tens of thousands of people in eastern Chad is under threat from banditry, which has led several aid agencies to temporarily halt their operations in the face of attacks. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported that the suspension by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and five nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) would affect at least 37,000 people in eastern Chad.

DRC: Insecurity remains in the area of Dongo, province of Equateur where several ethnic clashes are still reported. On the 20th of November 2009, the villages of Buturu and Eperdement were attacked. Since the beginning of the altercations about 82,856 people fled the area, 38,856 people as internally displaced and 44,000 others as refugees in the neighbouring Congo. In the province Orientale, LRA rebels are still very active; three villagers of Masimba were abducted from 7 to 11 November 2009. In the same period several rebels surrendered with heavy weapons to the FARDC (National Army). Military operations against FDLR rebels are still ongoing in North Kivu and South Kivu but many acts of violence (attacks, rape, abduction) against civilians are still being perpetrated by the rebels. A cargo boat which was carrying passengers sank in the lake Mai-Ndombe (province of Bandundu) and killed at least 73 people on the 25th November 2009. Cholera outbreaks: In South Kivu 294 new cases without death were reported in week 47 making a total of 10,070 cases with 102 deaths (CFR: 1%) from week 1 to 47 in 2009. In North Kivu, 101 new cholera cases without death were reported in week 47 making a total of 5,639 cases with 61 deaths (CFR: 1.1%) from week 1 to 47 in 2009.

Ethiopia: Food security situation: WFP report in November showed that food security has improved in some parts, but has been deteriorating throughout the month in the low land districts where almost the entire crops failed as a result of erratic and inadequate rains. In Oromia Region, malnutrition case is still being reported in East and West Harerghe. In October 2009 a screening conducted in East and West Harerghe identified significant and continuing cases of malnutrition in the districts. In West Hararghe, Habro district, out of 1,831 malnourished children, 237 were found to have oedema, while in Daro Lebu districts 186 children out of 1,630 had oedema. Acute Watery Diarrhoea (AWD) is still continuous in Afar and SNNP regions. A new outbreak has been reported in Dasench district of South Omo zone since 5th November 2009. In the district affected 29 villages (72.5%) out of the 40 are affected by the outbreak. Teams from central, regional, Zonal levels supported by humanitarian partners are providing support for case management, surveillance activities.

Kenya: (No update received). The outbreak of cholera continues to spread across the country, cumulatively it has affected 49 districts with a total of 10,048 cases and 201 deaths (CFR: 2.0%) since January 2009.

Countries Under Surveillance

Congo: The refugee situation in the district of Likouala is worsening with new influx of refugees from DRC. About 44,000 people are now registered. WHO is assisting with two emergency experts in the field and has provided 2 Emergency Health Kits. WHO as also developed an emergency project of about 280,126 USD for funding by CERF.

Guinea: We are still monitoring the political situation which so far remains tensed. Negotiation between different protagonists continues.

Mozambique: Outbreak of Typhoid Fever in Neno and Tsangano districts: The latest update shows, a total of 359 cases with 35 deaths (CFR: 9.7%) since the onset of the disease (5th May 2009).

Niger: Malnutrition: (No Update received). In week 44, a total of 4,729 cases with 14 deaths were reported. A total of 161,854 cases with398 deaths were reported from 1st January to 1st November 2009. Political situation is still tensed but there is a renewal of talk among all parties.

Zimbabwe: Cholera outbreak: In week 47, a total of 29 cases were reported of which 26 cases were back reported. This brings the total to 146 cumulative cases and 5 deaths (CFR: 3.4%) as of 22nd November 2009 in 9 out of 62 districts in the country.

Pandemic A H1N1 in the WHO African Region: The incidence of confirmed cases has been slightly declining in the last few weeks. As of 30th November 2009, a total of 15,887 confirmed cases with 108 deaths have been reported in 29 countries.

MAP - Africa: Weekly Emergency Situation Update (23 Nov - 06 Dec 2009)