By the end of July 2020, corresponding to the harvest period, the number of people in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) in the nine districts analysed will likely reach approximately 527 000 (23% of the population analysed, an increase of almost 10% compared to the estimate made in October 2019). As for the number of people in Emergency (IPC Phase 4), it is estimated at 27,400, or 1% of the population analysed.
Despite the humanitarian aid provided since January 2020 and planned until July 2020, eight districts will likely remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and Tulear 2 in Stress (IPC Phase 2). Almost all the districts of the Great South were affected by the drought that occurred between January and March 2020. Ampanihy and Tsihombe Districts are the most affected, with 25% of households expected to be in IPC Phase 3 (Crisis) and 5% in IPC Phase 4 (Emergency).
The good rainfall forecast during the analysis conducted in October 2019 did not occur. On the contrary, the rainfall trends recorded between January and March 2020 showed a large rainfall deficit. The main agricultural season was missed by most of the rural population, especially for cereals and pulses. Expected production from April onwards will be low or insignificant for most districts. In addition, consumption of tubers before they reach full maturity will take place from May-June 2020. The lean season will likely be early.
In addition, the socio-economic impacts of the restriction measures to contain the spread of COVID-19, and the direct and indirect threats of COVID-19, hang over the Great South. A disruption of the market supply chain is inevitable, with food prices under threat in the coming weeks.
Migration will no longer be an option to find alternative sources of income, and the population of the Great South, who have already migrated to the big cities, are directly affected by the impacts of containment and can no longer transfer money to the family remaining in the area.
The most affected households will be poor agricultural households living on small plots of land and without livestock. Without assistance, this segment of the population could engage in coping strategies that could damage their livelihoods and the environment.