Papua New Guinea Drought, Floods and Conflict Response Situation Report - 29 February 2016

Situation Report
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  • IOM conducted a weeklong training on conservation agriculture to 110 members of drought affected communities in Jiwaka, Enga and Simbu Provinces.

  • In response to recent flooding and landslides in the Highlands and Momoase regions, IOM prepares to deliver relief to an estimated 1,500 heavily affected households.

  • IOM provides post-conflict relief to a community in Pomio District, East New Britain Province, in the form of shelter, NFIs and food items.

Situation Overview

After months of suffering from an El Nino-driven drought, large parts of the country have experienced torrential rain since early February, exacerbating the existing levels of vulnerability. Heavy prolonged rainfall has caused rivers to swell and hillsides to become saturated with water. The resulting flooding and landslides have affected homes, food gardens, water sources and infrastructure in several provinces of Papua New Guinea (PNG). In particular, many Highland and Momase region provinces have sustained extensive damage during the recent extreme weather.

As patterns of vulnerability continue to remain dynamic, with recent weather extremes somewhat convoluting ongoing programmes, IOM as part of its early recovery interventions following the effects of the El Nino associated drought, has recently conducted a conservation agriculture training, targeting 110 affected farmers in Jiwaka, Simbu and Enga Provinces. The trainings also involved counterparts working for the Department of Agriculture and Livestock from the targeted provinces and was held at the Lalibu station in Southern Highlands Province from 24th to 26th February, 2016.

In light of the recent flooding and landslides, IOM is committed to planning an efficient emergency response targeting the most heavily affected and vulnerable communities in Jiwaka, Simbu and Morobe Provinces. IOM has already conducted initial community assessments in Jiwaka and Morobe provinces and has begun to identify the composition of shelter, NFI and food items per household to be distributed.

An isolated incident of tribal conflict resulted in the displacement of 18 families and death of two people in Pomio district, East New Britain. , IOM responded within days following an initial community assessment conducted on 15th February. In close coordination with the Provincial Disaster Centre, IOM delivered post-conflict relief in the form of shelter, NFI and food for all of the 18 displaced families. The displaced Sulka community are convening talks with the perpetrators from the Baining community on a weekly basis and it is hoped that a peace agreement will be reached in the coming weeks. IOM’s relief operations constitute a part of a unified UN humanitarian effort in the country.