The security situation remains extremely tense and volatile throughout the region amid continuing attacks leading to further displacements of populations into border countries. In Nigeria, on 30 January, in a village located a few kilometers from Maiduguri, the deadliest attack in weeks resulted in 86 people killed. The Far North region of Cameroon experienced a sharp increase in number of attacks with villages and internally displace people (IDP) camps targeted. In Chad and in Niger, the situation remains tense despite the decrease in number of attacks in January. Nevertheless sporadic attacks are likely to happen both in the Lac Region (Chad), and in the Diffa region (Niger).
The fluid movements of the population in the Lake Chad Basin justify regular assessments of new and spontaneous sites in need of assistance. In January,
WFP participated in a multi-sectorial assessment of the situation of displaced populations in Bol, Daboua and Liwa (Chad). Due to security concerns, since December 2015, UN agencies had been unable to visit this area in the north of Bol. According to preliminary estimates some 56,000 displaced persons and 7,000 local community members are hosted in 22 sites. WFP is planning assistance for these vulnerable groups, initially with High-Energy Biscuits, and later through general food distributions -GFD- (cash-based or in-kind food assistance). WFP had already provided food assistance to eight sites in Daboua and Liwa in November 2015.
In all four countries the rainy season has ended and the harvest period is at its peak. The difficult situation in the Lake basin has worsened the already precarious food insecurity of the local population. In Nigeria, food security and livelihoods of people living in the conflict-affected areas are seriously affected by the volatile security situation. In Cameroon, the Far North region is characterized by high levels of food insecurity (over 35 percent according to the latest Emergency Food Security assessment). In Chad, in the Lac region slight rain deficits are resulting in a decrease in agricultural and forage production. The difficult situation in the Lac region is compounded by the lower-than expected outlook for the 2016 agricultural season in the Sahelian belt and in Bahr el Ghazal region, one of the three regions primarily affected.
The PuH for operational surge support and coordination to the Lake Chad Basin Regional EMOP 200777 is now fully operational in N’Djamena and supporting the implementation of the Regional EMOP. The PuH aims to improve coordination across the four countries for the scale up of cash-based transfer (CBT) activities, roll out of the regional nutrition strategy, as well as improve information sharing.
With the extension of the Lake Chad Basin Emergency Operation until 31 December 2016, programmatic tools have been revised to put a stronger focus on expansion of CBT activities in Niger, Cameroon and Chad. In addition, the general food baskets will include fortified blended food to optimize the nutrient profile while nutrition prevention interventions are scaled-up. WFP continues to support Nigeria’s emergency management agencies in reinforcing their technical and operational capacity to respond to the crisis.
WFP is currently using mobile Vulnerability Analysis and Mapping (mVAM) as a tool to gather more timely food security information in the four countries. Data analysis is on-going in Nigeria. In Cameroon findings from the Far North region, a precarious food insecurity situation of populations in the affected areas. In Niger results indicated that only 2 percent of the people interviewed reported poor food consumption, 61 percent limited food consumption, while 15 percent have an acceptable food consumption score. Over 90 percent are generally satisfied with services provided by WFP.
Scale up in CBT activities is on-going in all four countries of Lake Chad Basin, with Niger starting cash distributions to 30,000 people in early February.
WFP is rolling out its new nutrition strategy in the Lake Chad Basin countries, with a focus on prevention of malnutrition and nutrition sensitive activities all through the response, including systematic screening for malnutrition of children and pregnant and nursing women.