The humanitarian needs that marked the last months of 2019 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) continued to disrupt the lives of millions of Congolese during the first half of 2020. From Djugu (Ituri) to Nyunzu (Tanganyika), from Mbandaka (Ecuador) to Uvira (South Kivu), humanitarian crises throughout the country are intertwined, perpetuating chronic suffering for some and, for the first time, plunging others into crisis. The coronavirus pandemic has further aggravated the situation, leading to an increase in the funds needed to meet humanitarian needs, from US$1.86 billion to $2.07 billion. Over halfway into the year, just 20 per cent of the humanitarian funding needed has been received. Without a substantial increase in funding, humanitarian organizations will be forced to make difficult operational choices that could leave some communities on the brink of survival.
Thousands of people under water
Torrential rains in the eastern part of the country between January and May resulted in flooding that caused severe property damage across several provinces. In Tanganyika, Haut-Lomami, Haut-Katanga and Lualaba, nearly 400,000 people were affected by the rising waters, and about 60,000 were forcibly displaced from their homes. Some 350 schools were destroyed, nearly 12,000 hectares of agricultural land were flooded, and close to 40 health structures were destroyed. In South Kivu, an additional 265,000 people were affected, including in Uvira, Fizi, Nundu, Lemera and the Ruzizi Plain. The Ruzizi Plain suffered heavy farming losses, as almost 75 per cent of its 15,000 hectares of crops were lost. In Maniema Province, the floods destroyed nearly 30,000 houses and abruptly ended the schooling of more than 7,000 students. Although flooding is commonplace, lack of urban planning is often cited as an aggravating factor. Very few provinces have a disaster management plan.
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- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.