The humanitarian situation is further deteriorating in the Grand Sud, an arid zone hosting some 2.78 million people. The area is affected by the most acute drought since 1981, which has received less than 50% of the average expected rainfall since the start of the current agricultural season (November 2020 to January 2021).
Some 1.14 million people are facing severe food insecurity (one third of the total population). By the end of April 2021, over 135,000 children aged 6 to 59 months could be acutely malnourished including at least 27,000 of them severely acutely malnourished.
A second wave of COVID-19 pandemic is also affecting the area and reducing operational capacity.
About 60% production losses are expected in May-June 2021 compared to the average of the last five years in Amboasary, Ampanihy and Ambovombe.
While the Grand Sud is at the peak period of the crisis, the agricultural harvests of May-June 2021 are compromised by extreme lack of rain, resulting in an extended and amplified crisis beyond June.