1.1 In accordance with Subsection (1) of Section 27 of the Civil Protection Act of 1989, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe His Excellency Cde R.G. Mugabe, on 4 February 2016declared a State of Drought Disaster following the impact of El Nino induced erratic rainfall. The influence of climate change cannot be ruled out. The amount of rainfall received to date is inadequate to meet basic household consumption needs as well as support for livelihoods, agriculture and wildlife.
1.2 The entire country has been affected, with the most affected being the traditionally low rainfall Regions 4 and 5 covering, mainly Masvingo, Matebeleland South and Matebeleland North provinces. Even the traditionally food secure provinces of Mashonaland in regions 1, 2 and 3 have been severely affected.
1.3 All cities, municipalities and urban settlements will have to endure prolonged water rationing schedules. In addition, the reduced water levels will drastically affect electricity generation at the country's hydro-power points.
1.4 It is estimated that humanitarian assistance be rendered from February to December 2016 and thereafter a review be done for the ensuing period from January to June 2017. Due to the inter linkages of the various sectors in the economy, the disaster is anticipated to affect a wide range of sectors including the manufacturing sector and energy sector. However, the most affected sectors are food and nutrition, agriculture, water, education, health, and wildlife. Based on these needy sectors, the Government of Zimbabwe requires a total of USSI 572 009 953.00with effect from February to December 2016. This is for providing humanitarian assistance in the short to medium term also taking into account sustainable measures which will assist in the event that the drought prolongs to the 2016/17 agricultural season.
2.1 The 2015/16 national outlook seasonal forecast pointed to prospects of normal to below normal rainfall. However, the cropping season started late throughout the country. As of February 2016, the peak of the rainfall season, over 95% of the country had received less than 75% of what they would have normally received. The least amounts received are in Binga, Lupane, Tsholotsho (Matabeleland North) Zaka and Buffalo Range in Masvingo.
2.2 Overall, the food insecure rural population has since risen to approximately 2820 000 which translates to approximately 30% of the population. Initial indications from the 2015 Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC) report were that 1,5 million people were food insecure with all the 60 rural districts being affected in varying degrees. However, there has been an upsurge in distress calls from various districts inclusive of traditionally food secure Mashonaland Provinces. Furthermore, preliminary indications from the 2016 ZimVAC report revealed that provinces with the highest proportion of the food insecure populations include Matabeleland North at 40%, Midlands at 30%, Mashonaland Central at 21% and Mashonaland East at 17%.