• The IGAD Climate Prediction and Application Center’s(ICPAC) March to May forecast is for near normal to below normal rainfall totals over much of the northern parts of South Sudan, southern Sudan, northern and eastern Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, the eastern half of Kenya, Somalia, and the eastern parts of Tanzania. The forecast has an increased likelihood of normal to above normal rainfall over the western sector of the region including Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, the southern parts of South Sudan, southwestern and central Ethiopia, western and central Kenya, and the western half of Tanzania (Figure 2).
• The onset of February to May Belg rains in Ethiopia has been delayed by about three weeks. This will have an impact on the maturation of sweet potatoes in Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples’ Region (SNNPR) and the planting of long-cycle and Belg crops.
• Severe water shortages and limited availability of pasture are being reported in northwestern Somalia and the southeast pastoral livelihood zones across the border in Djibouti. The dry conditions are a result of the repeated poor performance of the December to February Hays/Dadaa rains since 2010.