South Sudan

South Sudan: The international community must act now

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Tens of thousands of lives in South Sudan are now in danger, warns Liv Tørres, Secretary General at Norwegian People’s Aid, urging the international community to act before it is too late.

18.05.2014 | Julie Offerdal Del +

South Sudan: The international community must act now

“With a million people internally displaced, 300,000 refugees having fled to neighboring countries, more than 4 million people in need of emergency aid and a risk that that the number will almost double over the next few months, a swift and massive reaction from the donors is crucial”, said Tørres.

The Oslo International Donor Conference, being held on May 19 and 20, is our chance to act. The UN has estimated that humanitarian partners need $1.8 billion to save lives, prevent famine and avert the loss of another generation of South Sudanese children in 2014. $536 million have been secured, but $1.26 billion are still needed.

Norwegian People’s Aid is one of the largest humanitarian organizations in South Sudan. Since the fighting started in Juba in December 2013, NPA has distributed food and non-food items to internally displaced persons in Lakes state, Upper Nile state, Jonglei state and Central Equatoria state. Henrik Stabell, NPA Country Director in South Sudan, expressed a growing worry over the rainy season, which will begin soon.

“The rain will make large parts of the country impossible to reach by road until November”, he said. “In addition, the planting season is coming to an end, and a lot of people have not been able to plant their seeds because they had to flee from the violence. We must get food into these areas now. All help that comes later will be much less efficient and more expensive”.

For more information on the humanitarian situation on South Sudan and NPA’s work, please watch this 10 minute documentary produced by the NPA South Sudan team.

Relief aid from NPA

On Humanitarian aid NPA in partnership with WFP has so far distributed 1,122mt of food to 89,061 IDPs in Lakes state, Upper Nile state, Jonglei state and Central Equatoria state.

We have staff and do distribution in both government and opposition held areas, and have capacity to enlarge the program to respond to the massive needs as soon as donor funds are made available “We need money to distribute sufficient aid to avoid the greatest famine in Africa in 30 years”, said Tørres. “For many, it is already too late. They have not had the chance to produce and store a sufficient amount of food”, she continued.