Heavy floods displace thousands in Greater Upper Nile region
October 21, 2019 (JUBA) - Unusually heavy seasonal flooding has affected large areas of South Sudan’s Greater Upper Nile region with estimated between 600,000-800,000 people affected, authorities said.
As of late October, Ayod, Maban, Mayom, Nyirol, Pibor and Uror were reportedly among the counties most heavily affected by floods.
According to OCHA, Based on assessments already conducted in affected areas, and in line with experience from previous floods in South Sudan, critical needs include access to safe drinking water, anti-malarial and other basic drugs, and plastic sheets to be used as temporary shelters for families with damaged or destroyed houses.
“The degradation or loss of crops and other sources of livelihoods can cause longer-term humanitarian needs and reduce food security in the following year. The scale of the impacts on the late-2019 harvest needs to be determined,” partly reads OCHA’s report.
It added, “The high water level in some flooded areas is constraining vulnerable people’s physical access to basic services and restricting humanitarians’ ability to assess and respond to needs”.
Meanwhile, the UN agency said in places where water level has receded, humanitarian organizations are responding to assessed needs, in support of the Government. Regular humanitarian response in line with the 2019 Humanitarian Response Plan is ongoing in flood-affected counties, and can be adjusted based on assessed priority needs.
Based on early assessments, it said, there could be a need to fast-track the next round of humanitarian food assistance in some locations.
South Sudan descended into war in December 2013 when President Salva Kiir accused the country’s former Vice President Riek Machar of plotting a coup. Since then, the conflict has killed tens of thousands of people and displaced millions.