Regional Displacement of South Sudanese - Kajo-Keji County, Central Equatoria, South Sudan and Moyo District, West Nile Sub-Region, Uganda (March 2018)
Moyo District in the West-Nile Sub-Region of Uganda is a major hosting area for people displaced from Kajo-Keji County in Central Equatoria, South Sudan after fighting spread though he county in the second half of 2016. Due to ongoing insecurity, Kajo-Keji County has been mostly inaccessible to humanitarian actors since July 2016.
As part of an ongoing assessment of regional displacement from South Sudan, REACH began primary data collection in Moyo District in September 2017. This consisted of focus group discussions (FGDs) with displaced South Sudanese living in host communities across Moyo District, and Key Informant (KI) interviews of South Sudanese living in Moyo District, humanitarian actors working in Kajo-Keji County and host community government officials of Moyo and Yumbe Districts. This was intended as an initial step to understanding factors influencing returns to South Sudan and to begin linking the humanitarian response across East Africa through the development of cross-border information streams.
In January 2018, REACH expanded data collection efforts in Moyo District in order to fill information gaps on humanitarian needs in Kajo-Keji County. As part of its Area of Knowledge (AoK) methodology, REACH began collecting data from a network of KIs who have sector-specific knowledge about hard-to-reach settlements through regular direct or indirect contact, or recent displacement. These interviews were primarily conducted by phone with people living in Kajo-Keji County; some were conducted inperson in Moyo District with people recently arrived from Kajo-Keji County or in close contact with people still residing there.
Metuli town and surrounding areas of northwestern Moyo District were not assessed due to persistent insecurity. Although current AoK coverage is still limited and its findings are not generalizable, it provides an indicative understanding of the needs and current humanitarian situation in assessed areas of Kajo-Keji County.
Demographics and Livelihoods
Kajo-Keji County historically had one of the highest population densities in South Sudan; population projections based on 2008 Sudanese census numbers estimated that by 2018 the population of Kajo-Keji county would be 290,656. This number is not representative of the current population, but is an indicator of the potential population in the area if conflict had not displaced so many people. Like most of Greater Equatoria, farming is reported to be the primary livelihood activity; however, semi-pastoral cattlekeeping is widely utilized as well.
Moyo District, across the border immediately to the south, has reportedly hosted people from Kajo-Keji County for generations. Many FGD participants described establishing businesses, purchasing land and building homes in Moyo District in the past, particularly during previous times of conflict in South Sudan in the 1970s, 1990s and in 2013. Some even reported intermarrying with the Ugandan host community. Population projections based on 2014 Ugandan census numbers estimated the 2017 population of the district to be 147,600.