Kenya + 9 more

WFP Emergency Report No. 43 of 2000

This report includes: (A) Resources (B) Executive Board Session (C) Horn of Africa: (1) Kenya, (2) Ethiopia (D) Great Lakes Region: (1) Democratic Republic of Congo, (2) Tanzania, (3) Burundi (E) Sierra Leone (F) Angola (G) Palestinian Territory (H) Afghanistan (I) Southeast Asia: (1) Cambodia, (2) Vietnam
From Francesco Strippoli, Senior Humanitarian Adviser. Available on the Internet on the WFP Home Page (www.wfp.org), or by e-mail from Zlatan.Milisic@wfp.org. For information on resources, donors are requested to contact Marius.deGaayFortman@wfp.org at WFP Rome, telephone 39 06 6513 2004 or 06 6513 2250. Media queries should be directed to Trevor.Rowe@wfp.org, telephone 39 06 6513 2602. The address of WFP is Via Cesare Giulio Viola 68, Parco dei Medici, 00148 Rome, Italy.

(A) Resources

(a) On 26 October in Rome, WFP hosted a consultation with donors and representatives of the WFP Executive Board Bureau on the resources and food pipeline situation in WFP operations that are facing funding problems. WFP operations in Central and West Asia, Balkans, Northern Caucasus, Mekong Delta, Angola, Kenya, West Africa, Central America, Colombia, Latin America and the Caribbean, Algeria, Iraq and North Africa were discussed. The "Yellow Pages" document - 2000 Estimated Food Needs and Shortfalls for WFP assisted Emergency and Protracted Relief Operations, Development Projects and Special Operations was distributed prior to the meeting and the "Blue Book" Document - Projected 2001 Needs for WFP Development and Emergency activities - launched at the meeting.

(B) Executive Board Session

(a) The third session in the year 2000 of the WFP's governing body took place on 23- 26 October in Rome. The Executive Board discussed and reviewed policy issues, financial and budgetary matters, evaluation reports, organisational and procedural matters, operational matters (including approval of project documents and review of already approved ones) and reports by the Executive Director.

(b) The following protracted relief and recovery operations (PRROs) were approved: Cambodia 6038.01, DR Congo 6274, Republic of Congo 6265, West Africa Coastal 6271 and the budget increase for Nepal 6151. The Executive Board was further informed of the following PRROs approved by the WFP Executive Director: Bangladesh 6155.01, Dominican Republic 6202, India 6211, Mali 5804.01, Palestinian Territory 6214, Yemen 6090.01, Zambia 6134.01.

(C) Horn of Africa

(1) Kenya

(a) Following the rapid need assessments in September, the number of drought-affected people in need targeted by WFP has been increased by about 17 percent, from 2.47 million to 2.89 million. Beneficiary caseload for the expanded school feeding programme remains 1.04 million children.

(b) A FEWS vulnerability update of 13 October highlighted that pastoralists remain the most vulnerable group in Kenya, especially in the eastern and northern arid and semi-arid districts. The update also highlighted a serious problem of seed consumption in many areas. Water shortages are also apparent, with many water sources drying up.

(c) Households are increasingly adopting untenable coping strategies, in an effort to mitigate the impact of prolonged drought. Such options include reduction in the frequency of meals to one a day, consumption of maize normally stored as seed, distress livestock sales, consumption of wild fruits and foregoing medical treatment to finance food and water purchases.

(d) WFP delivery and distribution plan for October is for slightly below 31,000 tons of relief food. WFP operation continue to be hampered by difficulties of getting food cleared at Mombasa port. A consignment of wheat has been cleared by port authorities but is still not accessible for transport. As a result of these delays, it may be necessary to combine planned food distributions for November and December.

(e) No change was reported regarding resources situation. Up to date, 75.3 percent of the net requirements for the drought EMOP in Kenya has been covered by donor contributions.

(f) During the week, 2,196 tons of CSB were received from UNICEF and despatched to Tana River, Mandera, Wajir, Kapenguria and Turkana districts. Supplementary feeding programme is ongoing in ten districts. In October, distribution of supplementary food will take place simultaneously with general distributions.

(g) Food distribution under the expanded school feeding programme is ongoing in twelve districts. A total of 1,041,118 children are being targeted with food for the third school term. Ninety percent of the distribution has been completed.

(h) Due to heavy rains in Tana River district, the road was impassable between Garsen and Hola. Trucks en route to North Eastern were held for eight days and cargo destined to Hola discharged in Garsen.

(i) Security incidents, some involving casualties, were reported in Wajir, Garisa and Moyale.

(2) Ethiopia

(a) The three field teams that participated in the assessment of requirements and review of relief operations in response to the drought, in the Somali Region, came back from the field on 17 October. Mission report is currently under preparation and will be released after its endorsement by DPPC.

(b) The discussions on the methodology and other preparations for the annual emergency needs assessment are proceeding. Some 22 teams are expected to participate in the assessment, planned to start in accordance with the following schedule: 4 November - Tigray Region, 25 November - Amhara Region, 19 November - Oromiya Region, 19 November - SNNPR Region, 11 November - Somali Region, 11 November - Afar Region.

(c) The Senior UN Network on IDPs inter-agency mission visited Ethiopia on 17-19 October. WFP staff from the Ethiopia country office accompanied the mission (which already included a WFP representative) on its trip to Tigray Region. The mission visited border area of Rama, which was the entry area for many Ethiopians expelled from Eritrea. Visits were made to the WFP distribution site at Abaq and interviews made with recently expelled Ethiopians at Adwa.

(d) The arrival of Ethiopians expelled from Eritrea has ceased this month. The total number of those who have arrived is 26,000-30,000. The conditions at the reception centre in Adwa have largely improved and the main basic services are being provided.

(e) It has been reported that nearly 200 people have been killed or injured in land-mine incidents since February. WFP is currently looking into possibilities to assist demining activities.

(f) The upgrading of the road between Djibouti and Gallafi, under a WFP Special Operation (6243) is progressing well and some important improvements have been achieved. The turn-around time for trucks has been reduced from ten hours (in July) to six.

(g) DPPC has requested WFP to deploy more of the short haul trucks in Somali region. Currently, some 110 short haul trucks are operating there. The short haul trucks have been facing difficulties when passing through villages in Gode, on their way to distribution points in Afder zone, and measures are currently being undertaken to ensure their safe passage to final distribution points.

(h) Air operations for Somali Region are now operating with a stronger capacity. With a Grand Caravan donated by ECHO for WFP operations, and another Caravan operated by Abyssinian Flight Services, WFP is flying regular rotations linking the 15 airstrips in the region to the main centres Gode and Jijiga, as well as Dire Dawa and Addis Ababa. The importance of the WFP chartered helicopter remains, to ensure access and safety for relief workers.

(i) Nutritional training of 25 WFP staff was organised in Addis Ababa between 12 and 17 October, to strengthen their knowledge in the field of nutrition.

(j) The negative effects of the recently imposed ban by the Gulf States on livestock import from Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, Djibouti, Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania are anticipated to be much worse than those in 1998-1999, due to the lack of alternative markets, general poor condition of livestock and the fact that the ban came into effect before the peak period for Ramadan livestock sales (December).

(D) Great Lakes Region

(1) Democratic Republic (DR) of Congo

(a) WFP generally assists an average of 290,000 persons in North Kivu province, from the total of 403,000 registered IDPs. Current shortage of cereals has prompted WFP to significantly reduce its activities and focus on vulnerable groups in nutritional centres. There were no deliveries since mid-September and the next distribution will take place following the arrival of 448 tons of cereals in late October.

(b) Very volatile security situation continues to cause new population displacements in Rutshuru, Masisi, Walikale and the Far North (North Kivu), constantly increasing the basic relief needs. The local population is unable to deal with the IDP problem because more than 30 percent of the beans and corn crops have been lost due to the drought.

(c) Displacement of population from Shabunda (South Kivu) towards Kalima and from Kalima towards Kindu continues. According to MERLIN, around 11,000 IDPs have gathered in Kalima (Maniema province) fleeing insecurity. The Catholic Mission in Kalima has provided a working figure of 15,000 IDPs for the area. Christian Aid reported the arrival into Kindu of IDPs from Kalima and an outbreak of cholera epidemics.

(d) Malnutrition is still reported in South Kivu, especially in the forest belts where armed confrontations still continue to hinder humanitarian interventions. The Bukavu-Uvira, Bukavu-Walungu and Shabunda roads are closed to humanitarian agencies and partners. The four flights carrying WFP food into Shabunda (out of eight planned) were not enough to meet the requirements there. South of Bukavu, armed groups attack vehicles without distinction.

(e) During September, a total of 90 tons of food were delivered to Bukavu. The stocks are insufficient to meet the October requirements at a time when IDPs families are returning home for the farming season and need support with food aid.

(f) According to WHO, the National Days of Vaccination revealed that the nutritional situation of children below five years in the province of Equator is deplorable. Some 936 acutely malnourished children attend nine nutritional centres there.

(g) During the last week of September, FAO and WFP carried out an assessment of crops and food supply in the Province of Bas-Congo. The mission noted an upward trend in the agricultural production but also a persistent rise of food imports. The outstanding balance after the production and imports have been considered shows that populations in the Bas-Congo are still facing food deficits.

(h) A barge carrying 550 tons of food supplies was sent to Mbandaka, to cover October and November requirements there. From The prices of food in Mbandaka have tripled between June and September.

(i) A total of 2,477 Angolan refugees arrived in Kisenge during September. Most were from Kamafafa, Kayanda and Mukundweji areas in Angola. The total refugee caseload in Kisenge is currently just below 27,000. The available food stocks are decreasing.

(2) Tanzania

(a) A total of 2,650 tons of food were distributed to the refugees during the past two weeks in Kigoma, Kasulu, Kibondo and Ngara districts. Additional 18 tons were distributed to the new arrivals, asylum seekers and protection cases in Ngara and 73 tons to beneficiaries of supplementary, therapeutic and health centres in Ngara, Kasulu, Kibondo and Lugufu camps.

(b) The general food aid ration in Ngara and Kigoma camps included 60 percent of the minimum requirement for maize grain and 80 percent for pulses, CSB and oil, while the most vulnerable received a full ration. The refugees seemed to be relieved with the ration increase.

(c) A total of 7,787 newly arrived refugees were recorded in the country during the past two weeks, mainly from Burundi, but also from D.R. Congo and Rwanda. The influx of Burundian refugees necessitated the opening of Lukole A camp, as Lukole B was filled to the capacity. The total provisional figures of UNHCR for the refugee population in Tanzania is 489,793 persons, while a total of 483,818 received food during the last distribution. Feeding centres are currently assisting 17,332 malnourished children and nursing mothers.

(d) In Nyarugusu, refugee leaders responded positively to the call by the President of Parliament and the Governor of Katanga Province (D.R. Congo) to repatriate. At the end of the meeting with the visiting Congolese delegation, about 2,600 refugees registered for voluntary repatriation.

(e) Heavy rains raised some concern about the road conditions in the region. Lugufu and Kasulu districts were hard hit by the rains, which rendered the Kidahwe-Lugufu railway stretch completely impassable for a day, affecting deliveries to Kigoma, while the stretch between Mvugwe and Malagarasi River had a number of impassable points, which constrained access to Nyarugusu. Discussions are underway with the regional engineer and UNHCR regarding urgent repair works.

(f) Household food economy assessment in Lugufu entered its third week. The team visited several villages and held interviews with the authorities and residents. The exercise is expected to last for another two weeks.

(3) Burundi

(a) During the past two weeks, WFP distributed 649 tons of food to approximately 117,300 people in Bujumbura Rural province in line with the household food economy assessment recommendations. Seeds protection rations were provided to 80,100 drought-affected people in Kirundo and Muramvya provinces. WFP also authorised dispatch of 42 tons of food to five selective feeding projects benefiting 3,283 people, mainly children.

(b) WFP staff monitored six projects assisting orphans and chronically ill persons and found that the number of beneficiaries was increasing in some projects. Project managers were instructed that only registered beneficiaries should be assisted.

(c) No repatriation of Burundian refugees was reported during the past two weeks.

(d) A contingency planning mission was conducted in Burundi, Tanzania and Uganda between 1 and 13 October. Draft WFP guidelines for contingency planning were field-tested.

(e) Security worsened in the eastern provinces bordering Tanzania. Confrontations were reported in Gitega, Rutana and Makamba provinces, as well as in Bujumbura Town an Rural. Police control in Bujumbura Town has been tightened. Several planned WFP missions in Bujumbura Rural and Gitega provinces were cancelled due to security reasons.

(E) Sierra Leone

(a) During the week, WFP distributed 945 tons of food to 50,700 beneficiaries in Freetown, Kenema and Bo. WFP is continuing to face a serious cereals shortfall, currently estimated at 1,858 tons for the months of November and December. October distributions had to be prioritised on the basis of their urgency. All distributions supporting training and agriculture works were put on hold.

(b) WFP delivered 25 tons of food to Daru with the help of the UNAMSIL helicopter. This was the first delivery to Daru in four months, due to access problems. The food will be distributed to 2,500 school children and 80 child ex-combatants enrolled in SCF project. IMC, which is currently completing a nutritional assessment in Daru, will also receive food, for their supplementary feeding project targeting mostly IDPs.

(c) MSF-B, which is running a supplementary feeding centre in Bambuna, reported that the food security situation in the area is deteriorating. During the week, the agency evacuated 11 severely malnourished children to a therapeutic feeding centre in Freetown. Bambuna is surrounded by insecure areas and accessible only by air. Delivery capacity of WFP is limited to one helicopter (1.6 ton capacity) and insufficient to meet the needs of the most vulnerable, estimated at 27 tons. Efforts to deliver the food with UNAMSIL helicopter continue.

(d) UN Security reported an increase in fighting between RUF and CDF. Attacks were reported in Batkanu, North East of Port Loko, and in villages North East of Yele. Fighting also erupted in villages near Monghere, 27 miles North of Bo, but it was unclear if it was between RUF and CDF, or internal within RUF.

(F) Angola

(a) Two verifications of IDP numbers took place in Kuito (Bie), where 6,026 new IDPs have been recorded during the week. The number of new Pellagra and meningitis cases is on the rise in supplementary centres, while it has remained stable in therapeutic centres. WFP delivered 718 tons of food for 40,622 beneficiaries in Kuito.

(b) Community kitchens continue to assist vulnerable groups in Benguela, as a safety net. In Cubal, MINARS reported the arrival of 1,080 new IDPs from surrounding communes of Tumbulo, Yambala, Caouoa and south of Ganda. In Ganda, CRS postponed resettlement of 1,000 IDP families due to lack of security in the area.

(c) In Huambo, SCF-UK and MSF-F informed that the rate of moderate malnutrition has increased significantly among IDP and residents in Caliamammo. MSF-F will continue to support the health centre and SCF-UK, with WFP support, will open a supplementary feeding centre.

(d) WFP and MINARS reviewed the progress of the resettlement programme in Hoque and Cacula municipality (Huila). A total of 1,170 persons have been resettled in Tchikwakeia and Cavissi I, and 130 houses built for the resettled in Cavissi II. The resettlement is going on well, but most infrastructure is yet to be constructed.

(e) MSF reported that the nutritional situation in Uige has greatly improved. Of the 1,533 children surveyed, 82 percent were normally nourished, compared to 66 percent in January and May.

(f) New IDPs were reported in Kuando Kubango, Lunda Sul, Malanje, Uige and Moxico.

(g) NRC in Mbanza Congo (Zaire) reported the arrival of 1,041 returnees from Kinshasa, D.R. Congo, due to improved security. WFP started distributing local seeds acquired through an experimental seeds swap project to 111 IDP families there. The local administration has made available 15 hectares of arable land for resettled IDP households.

(h) Funding situation of the WFP PRRO in Angola remains unchanged, with 56 percent of the requirements covered by donor contributions.

(i) WFP airlifted a total of 2,164 tons of food and 291 tons of non-food items from Catumbela, Lobito and Luanda to various provinces (2,455 tons in total) and transported by road 40 tons of food from Luanda.

(j) Small-scale ambushes and attacks characterise the security situation. Incidents were reported in Bie, Huila, Kuando Kubango, Lunda Sul, Malanje, Moxico and Uige, several involving human casualties and new population displacement.

(G) Palestinian Territory

(a) The access points between the Palestinian Territory and Israel remain closed. Palestinian daily workers have not been able to enter Israel since the end of September. In the West Bank, the movement of Palestinians is restricted to the main routes between towns, though some access is possible through secondary roads.

(b) The Ministry of Social Affairs (MSA) of the Palestinian Authority has prepared an Emergency Appeal to cover food shortages for an estimated 200,000 families affected by the prolonged closure, disruption of economic activity and losses of income sources. MSA also estimated that up to 10,000 families may become displaced because of their proximity to areas of confrontation.

(c) WFP is assessing food requirements and may need to increase the scale of the ongoing PRRO, or formulate an emergency operation, to cater for the additional needs. Under the ongoing operation, 104,000 people are targeted as special hardship cases, mainly though the MSA.

(d) WFP food distributions are continuing in Gaza Strip and West Bank. In southern Gaza the distributions have resumed in Deer Albalah on 25 October and are expected to start in Khan Yunis and Rafah between 1 and 7 November. In the West Bank, the distributions continue in Hebron, Nablus, Tulkarem and Kalkilia and are planed for Bethlehem and Abu Dis from 1 November and Jericho from 5 November. Distribution plans for Ramallah, Salfeet and Janin will be prepared as soon as the security conditions allow this. WFP has started distributing one-month food packages under the ongoing operation as emergency assistance to 4,900 families who have no direct income as a result of the closures.

(H) Afghanistan

(a) Hundreds of thousands of poor Afghans will face starvation in a few months if resources needed to continue emergency operation caused by the worst drought in decades are not received. WFP received some donations and pledges over the last few months but they fell short of the appeals. If no new contributions are received soon, WFP will run out of food by February.

(b) WFP needs 115,000 tons of food, valued at approximately USD 54 million, to maintain its life-saving activities for over three million severely affected people until the end of next year. The number of destitute and needy people is expected to rise further in the coming months.

(c) Since the beginning of the year, WFP has distributed some 110,000 tons of food to 2,346,000 of the poorest, compared to 61,000 tons for the same period last year.

(d) WFP estimates that up to 12 million Afghans are affected by the drought, three to four million severely. The extremely low level of precipitation has destroyed almost all the rain-fed crops and decimated the livestock. The cereal deficit for Afghanistan in 2000/2001 is estimated at over 2.3 million tons, more than double that of the previous year, itself a record shortfall.

(e) With the drought raging for some four months, tens of thousands of families have migrated to urban centres. It is expected that under the deteriorating conditions faced, many more people in the worst hit areas will be forced to move, in order to survive. WFP has a significant role to play in preventing large-scale migration to urban areas or neighbouring Pakistan and Iran.

(f) WFP is currently also striving to continue its regular life-saving activities in Afghanistan, which include the essential bakeries in Kabul that feed 360,000 people every day.

(I) Southeast Asia

(1) Cambodia

(a) Recent assessments of the damages caused by floods suggest that 323 people have been killed, 387,400 evacuated and over 3.3 million affected. Crops on over 400,000 hectares of rice fields have been destroyed as well as 6,894 houses, while over 300,000 houses have been damaged.

(b) The 1,500 tons of rice ensured from the WFP contingency reserve of the on-going PRRO have already been distributed. WFP is also planning distributions of additional 5,200 tons through FFW, as part of the PRRO, in target communes that have been affected by floods. Some 800 tons of food, purchased by WFP through the quickly approved delegated authority EMOP, have also been distributed to an estimated 16,000 families.

(c) An emergency operation planned to last six months (October to March) and assist 500,000 people during the first month, 250,000 people during the second and third month and 115,000 people during the last three months has been approved earlier this month, with a total tonnage of 15,315 tons of relief food for flood victims.

(d) All initial WFP interventions (PRRO, delegated authority EMOP and the first phase of the latest EMOP) are implemented with the assistance of the Cambodian Red Cross. They are expected to encompass a total of 7,300 tons and be fully implemented by the end of October. Some 13 provinces are expected to benefit from this assistance, Kg. Cham and Kandal with the largest share of around 1,200 tons.

(e) The first phase of the latest EMOP is coming to an end shortly and the phase two - stabilisation - which will involve a decreased beneficiary caseload of 250,000, will be implemented until the end of the year. During this period, WFP will support repairs at the household level, expecting to help the households restart their normal lives and prevent them from having to go to other areas in search of food. The third phase will focus on repairs of community infrastructure damaged by the floods.

(2) Vietnam

(a) Five million people are estimated to have been directly or indirectly affected by the floods and up to 350,000 have been evacuated to higher grounds and safe areas.

(b) As the initial response to emergency food needs, the Prime Minister ordered release of 3,000 tons of rice from the government strategic stocks, to be distributed in the three most affected provinces of Long An, Dong Thap and An Giang. IFRC and Vietnam Red Cross purchased locally 2,000 tons, World Vision distributed 140 tons and there have been small distributions by other NGOs and local charitable agencies. WFP has purchased 945 tons of rice under a delegated authority EMOP and Germany has just confirmed a bilateral contribution through the German Red Cross and IFRC for local purchase of 2,000-3,000 tons. The total quantity of rice available as an initial response is some 8,000-9,000 tons. WFP estimated that this should cover the basic food aid requirements of the most affected people for the initial relief phase.

(c) WFP made an assessment of the situation in the two most affected provinces of Dong Thap and An Giang in early October and fielded another mission in the second half of the month, to monitor the first deliveries of WFP rice and distributions by Vietnam Red Cross. First deliveries of WFP food started on 19 October and all deliveries are to be completed this week. Actual distributions are expected to continue until mid-November.

(d) The final beneficiary lists submitted by the Vietnam Red Cross show a higher number of people in need of food aid than it was originally foreseen - a total of 91,321 people in 58 communes and towns of 7 districts in three provinces. A second distribution of relief food will be needed for these beneficiaries in December, from other sources, if an adequate supply of emergency food is to be ensured.

Note: All tonnage figures in this report refer to metric tons

(End WFP Emergency Report No 43)