North-East Nigeria: Humanitarian Situation Update, February 2018



In February 2018, humanitarian partners and the Government of Nigeria officially launched the Humanitarian Response Plan, based on priorities and vulnerabilities identified in the Humanitarian Needs Overview. A total of 60 organisations have committed to implementing 173 projects aimed at providing in life-saving assistance to 6.1 million women, children and men in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states. The total funding requirements for 2018 stand at US$1.05 billion. This year the response will also focus on durable solutions, early recovery, livelihoods and basic services rehabilitation, across all sectors, to support a multi-year vision that goes beyond saving lives today.

Now in its ninth year, the humanitarian crisis in north-east Nigeria remains one of the most severe in the world: 1.7 million persons remain internally displaced, human rights violations continue to be reported daily, and the food security situation remains extremely concerning as conflict continues to limit the amount of land under cultivation and 3.7 million persons are expected to face critical levels of food insecurity during the upcoming lean season (June through September). The Food Security and Nutrition needs are expected to be revised in March with the publication of the new Cadre Harmonisé analysis.

Large-scale population movements, triggered largely by insecurity, continue with 12,500 new arrivals in February alone, especially in Gwoza, Mobbar, Bama, Nganzai, Kukawa, Magumeri among others. Additional IDP influxes were also recorded from neighbouring countries, including Cameroon and Niger, into IDP camps and return areas in Ngala and Mobbar. Since late October 2017, over 60,000 vulnerable persons have been on the move for various reasons including insecurity, improved security in certain areas and poor living conditions. While assessments are still ongoing in these hotspot areas, rapid assessments and gap analyses have been developed and initial findings show that thousands, including host communities, are in dire need of food, water, shelter, blankets and clothes, and medical care. A multi-sectoral response has been possible through the rapid response mechanism and humanitarian organisations have scaled up their advocacy and resource mobilisation activities in order to meet the needs of the affected people. Additional displacements are expected for as long as hostilities will continue as newly arrived persons report that many more families remain in areas that are hard to reach for international humanitarian workers.

A suspected cholera epidemic broke out in Kukawa LGA, Borno State, in the towns of Baga and Doro. Since 13 February, close to 500 acute watery diarrhoea cases, suspected to actually be cholera cases, have been reported by the Borno State Ministry of Health.
A timely and coordinated response has been put in place and the outbreak should be under control in the coming weeks.

Humanitarian access continues to present major challenges, especially in Borno State. It is estimated that some 926,000 persons remain in areas that are hard to reach for international humanitarian organisations. Through civil-military coordination and community engagement, aid workers are working to expand the humanitarian space in north-east Nigeria. In addition, to improve local coordination and last-mile assistance, and increase the presence of humanitarians where vulnerable populations are living, to date, five ‘deep field’ humanitarian hubs (Maiduguri, Ngala, Dikwa, Bama and Gwoza) offering secure accommodation and Internet connectivity have been made operational. Another three (Monguno, Damasak and Banki) are expected to be fully operational in the coming weeks and another one, in Rann, is also planned, bringing the total to nine.

Although funds received in 2018 are extremely low for most sectors as of 28 February 2018, with only 2.4 per cent ($25.6 million) of the requirements met, most partners are able to continue to provide life-saving assistance thanks to about $196 million carryover funding from 2017. However, for the response to be sustainable and to avoid interruption in life-saving services, it is crucial that additional funding be received across all the sectors.


UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit