In 2015, 13 of the 36 States in Nigeria reported cholera cases, with Anambra, Kano, Rivers and latterly Ebonyi States being the worst affected. By the end of April 2015, 2,108 cases, with 98 deaths had been reported, and though it compared positively with previous years, the CFR had risen to as high as 12% in some areas. Following the outbreak, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) released CHF 175,228 from the Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support the Nigerian Red Cross Society (NRCS) respond to the needs of the 15,000 people (3,000 households (HHs) in Anambra, Kano and Rivers States for a period of three months. Kano was later replaced by Ebonyi State.
As part of the IFRC’s efforts to improve its operations and the level of accountability to all stakeholders, it was recommended that a review was carried out of the MDRNG020 Nigeria Epidemic (Cholera) to assess its 1) Relevance and appropriateness, 2) Efficiency, 3) Effectiveness, 4) Coverage, 5) Coherence, and 6) Sustainability and connectedness; with the intention of establishing lessons learned and recommendations for future operations. It was carried out from 10 – 15 August 2015 in Abuja Federal Capital Territory, Anambra, Ebonyi and Rivers States, using a standardized tool kit and comprised: review of secondary data, key informant interviews, focus group discussions, household surveys and a lessons learned workshop.
Based on the findings of the review, the DREF operation was able to exceed the targets that were agreed in the EPoA, and to some extent, contribute to a reduction in the number of cholera cases being reported in Anambra, Ebonyi and Rivers States. In total, 31,800 people (6,360 HHs) were reached through the DREF operation, which equates to 212% of the intended target (15,000 people / 3,000 HHs); and the response of the affected/at-risk population to the interventions was positive. In addition, the unprecedented response of the affected/at-risk population to the interventions was positive. In addition, the unprecedented number of cases that were being received compared to previous years, and also the exceptional CFR level also justified the launch of a DREF operation. Based on this, the operation can be seen to have been an effective response. Nonetheless, it should be noted that there were concerns identified in terms of the implementation of the DREF operation (based on the review criteria), which resulted in a rating of 17 / 30 (refer to “Chapter 2 / Key findings” for the rationale for this); and this report provides lessons learned and subsequent recommendations, which should be considered in future operations by the NRCS and the IFRC in Nigeria (and elsewhere as relevant).