Somalia: Weekly Humanitarian Bulletin No. 44, 06 - 13 Nov 2009

Situation Report
Originally published


Key Overall Developments

WHO has confirmed the Pandemic A (H1N1) 2009 for the first time in Somalia. Two out of 10 samples tested positive for novel H1N1 (pandemic strain) on 3 November 2009 in a referral laboratory in Nairobi, Kenya. Ethiopia and Kenya have already confirmed cases of H1N1, including from within refugee camps close to the Somali border. In collaboration with Somali health authorities, WHO has developed a national plan for H1N1 vaccination (vaccination of health workers and high-risk groups such as pregnant women) in accordance with WHO guidelines.

A joint Child Health Days campaign by UNICEF and WHO was successfully completed along the Afgooye corridor reaching at least 46,000 children under-five and 37,000 women of child-bearing age. UNICEF issued a press statement on 11 November saying "our joint success in implementing this large-scale outreach in Afgooye area is a testament to how we can make a difference in Somalia even in the most difficult of circumstances". The children were immunized against measles, polio, diphtheria, whooping cough and tetanus, in addition to provision of Vitamin A, de-worming tablets and nutritional screening for referral of malnourished children to feeding programmes. Women of child bearing age were immunized against neonatal tetanus.

On 10 November, the International Committee of the Red Cross reported that in October, the two main hospitals in Mogadishu admitted 550 people for surgical treatment, including 340 war wounded patients. The ICRC continues to provide the hospitals with surgical and other medical supplies, maintenance and infrastructure support among others.

There were several security incidents during the week. On 9 November, some 25 people, including 13 civilians were wounded in Gaalkacyo town, Mudug when unidentified person hurled two grenades. On 11 November, a Puntland Member of Parliament was assassinated by unknown masked men in Garowe as he walked out of a restaurant. The motive of his killing is unknown. Also on 11 November, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in Bossaso, Puntland, was assassinated by unknown gunmen. On the same day, in Belet Weyne, Hiraan, Al Shabaab elements seized a vehicle belonging to an international organisation.


The Humanitarian Response for Somalia has approved six proposals valued at US$415,176. Four of these project are for sand bag procurement and placement in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organisation, which will fund the cash-for-work component. The activities target flood prone areas in Middle and Lower Shabelle. The HRF is supporting NGO COOPI to response to the risks associated with the Rift Valley Fever outbreak. As an initial emergency response to flooding, an estimated 66,667 people in Lower Juba will benefit from an HRF funded OXFAM GB project to improve access to potable drinking water through the procurement and distribution of one million water marker water purification sachets. The sachets, enough to clean 20 million litres of water, will also be availed to other aid agencies as required.

Some 7,000 tarpaulins (emergency shelter) were distributed to vulnerable families in the Afgooye corridor by the ICRC. In September, ICRC also pre-positioned 230,000 sandbags at various sites along the Shabelle and Juba Rivers to enable local communities to shore up the river banks and thus lower the risk of flooding in villages and farms. In October, an additional 30,000 sandbags were supplied in Gedo and 20,000 in Middle Shabelle.

During the week, WFP distributed 144 metric tons of food commodities to 11,568 beneficiaries in locations within Bay and Bakool regions under the supplementary feeding programme. In Puntland, some 2,470 beneficiaries received 27 metric tons of food under institutional feeding in Garowe and Bossaso. In Middle Juba and Gedo, 30,000 people received 107 metric tons of food under supplementary and institutional feeding programmes. In Bu'aale, Middle Juba, WFP launched boat operations along the Juba River after the roads became inaccessible due to the current heavy rains with localized flooding. The two boats are scheduled to transport 60 metric tons of food to five final distribution points in the Juba regions from Bu'aale.

WHO, WFP and World Vision International, is operating a field hospital to treat civilians affected by conflict in Lower Juba. WHO is providing essential medical supplies including surgical supplies and on-the-job training for health workers at the hospital in trauma and emergency obstetric services, and on disease reporting.

In Puntland, over 2,800 additional children are accessing education following the reopening of schools in IDP camps in Bossaso. The schools are supported by UNICEF. IDP children attending these schools will also benefit from WFP School feeding program.

UNHCR through local NGO SORDA completed a distribution of 3,600 non-food items kit in Lafoole IDP camps along the Afgooye corridor, Lower Shabelle during the week. Concern World Wide through Lifeline-Gedo started distribution of 500 NFI kits to IDPs affected by floods in Ceel Waaq. A large area within the town is still under water while shallow wells remain contaminated.

Contact: For further information in English, contact: Rita Maingi on +254 734 800 120 - In Somali or English, contact Muna Mohamed on + 254 733 643 737 -

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