Ethiopia: Drought Response Situation Report No. 06 (as at 31 October 2016)

Situation Report
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This report has been prepared under the auspices of the Federal Disaster Risk Management Technical Working Group, co-chaired by the National Disaster Risk Management Commission (NDRMC) and OCHA with participation of Sector Co-Chairs (Government Line Ministries and Cluster Coordinators). It covers the period from 01 October to 31 October 2016.


  • Unrest disrupts the delivery of humanitarian services, declaration of State of Emergency easing movement of relief items to affected communities

  • Poor preforming hagayya/deyr rain from late September to November in Somali and Oromia regions as well as late onset and erratic performance of kiremt rains in Afar is causing shortage of water and pasture and calling for urgent water trucking services in the regions

Situation Overview

Poor Preforming Hagayya/Deyr Rain Resulted in Shortage of Water and Pasture in South and South Eastern Ethiopia

Southern and southeastern parts of the country are being highly affected by poor performance of the 2016 seasonal rain which normally starts in late September. In Oromia, poor performance of hagayya rain is affecting pastoralist and agropastoralists in Bale, Guji and Borena zones. Shortage of water and pasture, and deteriorating livestock physical condition are rising in these areas.
Following recent assessment conducted by the Borena zone sector offices in collaboration with NGOs operational in the zone, the regional Government deployed 13 water rationing trucks to woredas experiencing serious shortage of water and pasture However, more requests are coming for water trucks and livestock feed support from the Guji and Bale lowlands which are facing the same problem. The situation will continue until the next rainy season which is expected in March 2017.

In Afar region, although the food security situation is improving, the regional Disaster Risk Management Technical Working Group expects some parts of the region to be vulnerable to shocks due to the protracted drought in the previous two years. Despite the recharging of water sources by the good amount of kiremt rains received, there are reports of water shortage in the Region. Currently, three water trucks are functioning in Abala, Elida’ar and Serdo Kebele of Dubti woredas with the support of GIZ and the coordination and monitoring role of DPFSPCO.

Most parts of Somali region have not received the deyr rain expected from late September. Water trucking interventions started in Dolo Ado zone where the situation is severe. The 2016 gu assessment in June predicted that some 236 kebeles would require water interventions by the end of September. According to the WaSH Cluster, water trucking is ongoing in 38 woredas with 57 trucks in Afar (3 trucks), Oromia (34 trucks), SNNP (5 trucks), Somali (3) and Tigray (12 trucks). The current 2016 drought response in Ethiopia is the biggest ever of its kind, which thanks to Government leadership and generous donor support has averted a major catastrophe.

Urgent funding gaps for the response remain across multiple sectors to the end of 2016, notably for response to Acute Watery Diarrhoea (AWD), for interventions in livestock feed, animal health, and food assistance. There are outstanding financial requirements to the end of the year of over $300m.

Largest Humanitarian Response in Ethiopia Continues Despite Unrest

Ongoing protests in some parts of the country intensified following the deadly stampede at the Ireecha festival on 2 October 2016. The situation affected the delivery and implementation of humanitarian services across the country, increasing household food insecurity and moderate and acute malnutrition. Protesters reportedly blocked roads in several towns of Oromia and targeted public and private properties including trucks, affecting the dispatch and distribution of relief food and other humanitarian services. Relief warehouses were reportedly attacked by protesters in West Arsi. Restrictions on movement in Oromia and the limited access to the area in and around Assossa caused delays to erection and finalisation of Mobile Storage Units (MSUs).

However, since the declaration of the State of Emergency on 08 October 2016, road access across the country improved, allowing for better movement of relief items to affected woredas, and for distributions to resume in many areas where activities had been suspended due to protests in some parts of the country.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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