Somalia is facing severe drought conditions which has a devastating impact on the vulnerable population’s access to water both in terms of quantity and quality particularly in the worst-affected areas. A steady increase in water prices since September 2021 has led to water shortages in Jubaland, SWS, Galmudug, Puntland and parts of Hirshabelle state and eastern parts of Somaliland. Most shallow wells and other surface water bodies are now dry while water levels in strategic boreholes have dropped significantly. In SWS and Galmudug WASH partners are reporting a constant breakdown of strategic boreholes due to long hours of operation, fuel shortage, and limited spare parts. This will likely trigger massive displacement of rural communities who will have to move to urban areas in search of water.
In Gedo, SWS and Puntland localized displacement has been reported as rural populations dependent on shallow wells, berkad, and surface water, are now migrating to major towns with strategic boreholes. WASH partners in Gedo reported the arrival of 30,000 people (4, 940 households) newly displaced HHs who have reportedly arrived in Bulaxawo, Dolow, and Bardhere towns. Juba and Shabelle River water levels are low and are projected some sections of the channel to dry-up by end of early February. Lack of safe water will lead to a spike in AWD/Cholera cases in Cholera hotspot locations. Mudug, Lower Jubba and Gedo regions have reported the highest median water prices per barrel at $ 5.5, $ 4.0, and $3.6 respectively. Rural areas recorded the highest prices when compared to urban areas because water is trucked from towns with strategic boreholes to rural villages and high fuel cost and long-distance increases cost of water. In general, there is a slight increase in water prices in this reporting period. The regions Gedo, Bakool, Bay, and Mudug recorded price increases by 140%, 34%, 27%, and 20% respectively when compared June data.