[UN Logo]United Nations
Operation Lifeline Sudan(Southern Sector)
July 16-30 1998 #13
15th July SPLM/A declares a cease-fire in Bahr El Ghazal for three months. Later the same day the GOS also announced a cease-fire applying to Bahr El Ghazal for three months.
20th-22nd July – UNICEF Executive Director, Carol Bellamy visits northern and southern Sudan.
An OLS plan to scale up the nutrition programme has been developed.
The OLS Measles and Vitamin A campaign in Bahr El Ghazal has begun.
South Sudan is facing its most severe crisis for ten years. Needs in Bahr El Ghazal became acute following massive displacement in early February due to an outbreak of fighting in the region. Flight suspensions throughout February and March prevented the delivery of urgently needed assistance. Total flight clearance to the area was finally given on 31 March, and was effective throughout June.
From the beginning of the crisis, OLS has responded through the Emergency Response Team in Lokichoggio - comprised of UNICEF, WFP, UN-water, SCF-UK, World Vision International, SUPRAID, MEDAIR, MSF-Belgium, Oxfam and IRC. This team has coordinated the overall relief effort including assessment, logistics and distribution of relief support.
Other areas of acute needs include Western Upper Nile and parts of Equatoria. Insecurity in Upper Nile has been such that it has been difficult for OLS to establish uninterrupted programs
The 1998 Appeal budget for UNICEF/OLS Southern Sector was US$20 million. UNICEF/OLS southern sector has revised its budget for 1998 to US$26 million to reflect increased nutrition, household food security and air operations needs.
Southern Sudan is facing bleak agricultural prospects for 1998. Land preparation was disrupted by insecurity earlier in the year. The production of food is being further hampered by shortages of seed and rain in areas such as Bahr El Ghazal. According to reports by FEWS, much of Bahr El Ghazal will face significant crop failure, while Upper Nile is likely to have a very poor to below average production. Need for a high level of humanitarian relief will persist beyond the harvest of 1998.
Following record amounts of torrential rain, Bor County is currently experiencing historic floods. Rain and flooding on this scale was last recorded in the early 1960’s during which time the floods reportedly continued for 7 years.
The area from Panyagor southwards towards Paluer is currently submerged in water.
The flooding has caused people to flee their homes and has resulted in the lost of crops. It has been reported that people are moving their cattle onto the islands in the area, however these are also likely to become submerged
The most urgent needs of the area at present are food and shelter. However, due to the floods it is not possible to land relief aircraft on the airstrips. Four OLS staff are stranded in Bor County.
WFP has clearance for 13 aircraft. Aircraft currently flying are as follows: Five C-130s three Buffalo aircraft and four Ilyushin 76 aircraft. This is the largest airlift operation in WFP’s 35-year history.
For the month of July clearance was given for all locations except Maridi, Mundri, Panyagor, Yomciir, Ikotos.
All OLS agencies, including WFP, were evacuated from most of Western Upper Nile due to insecurity for most of the reporting period. Despite this, WFP did seize a short window of opportunity and delivered 53Mt of food to Leer on 15/16 July.
Bahr el Ghazal
Health and Nutrition
Vitamin A & Measles Campaign
A measles and Vitamin A campaign has begun in Bahr El Ghazal. The campaign is an integral part of emergency response. Approximately 200,000 children age six months to five years are expected to receive one dose each of measles and Vitamin A to boost their immunity and protect them against measles. The campaign will cover areas that have large population concentrations such as urban areas, food distribution locations, and cattle camps.
The training and mobilization for the campaign is completed in all areas except Wau. Staff of IRC, ACROSS, MSF-CH, WVI, MEDAIR, CCM, MDM, OXFAM, UNICEF and SRRA are vaccinating mothers and children in Yirol, Rumbek, Tonj, Twic, Gogrial, Aweil West and Aweil East.
The delivery of vaccines and other supplies was delayed in some locations such as Thiet, Marial, and Adior due to rain.
Preliminary results from Adior and Marial Bai indicate that approximately 3,600 and 3,400 children have been vaccinated respectively. UNICEF has provided two field assistants to support the campaign in locations not covered by NGOs.
Probably the biggest challenge facing OLS is to increase the numbers of children covered by the feeding centers UNICEF, with the main NGOs working in the nutrition sector, has prepared a plan of action to increase the number of feeding centers. As OLS did not have the capacity for such rapid expansion, two international NGOs, Tear Fund and Merlin, were admitted into the OLS Consortium. Tear Fund has already opened therapeutic and supplementary feeding centers in Akot as part of this plan.
In July OLS increased the number of children covered by the feeding centers from 14,000 to over 21,300 children. 25 supplementary feeding centers and 14 therapeutic feeding centers are now operational. A further 30 new locations are currently being assessed by OLS.
UNICEF is committed to operating 10 new centers, either through supporting the efforts of indigenous NGOs such as SUPRAID, (SUPRAID has opened supplementary feeding centers in Mayan Abun and Akoc) or by directly running the centers itself. The enhanced nutrition program requires a further $8million, of which UNICEF will provide $2.4 million including airops. The remaining $5.6 million to be found from other OLS Consortium partners.
An emergency Nutrition officer has arrived on secondment to UNICEF from the Danish Refugee Council to help in Rapid Response in the emergency programme. This officer will be based in Loki.
(Please see Map showing Feeding Centers in Bahr El Ghazal).
Household Food Security
Seeds and Tools
The transportation of seeds and tools to the field was completed by end of June with a total of 1,642 tons of seed and 89 tons of tools distributed to farmers in southern Sudan from January 1st to June 30th.
Despite the onset of the rains in many areas, the food security situation is rapidly deteriorating. Following a report by SCF-UK, which indicated that some of the population of Bahr El Ghazal was too weak to grind the food distributed by WFP, UNICEF gave SCF 20 hand operated grain mills for distribution to the populations identified during their survey.
Sorghum crops in Bararud areas are reported to be reaching heights of 1.5 foot and are looking healthy.
VSF-CH (Aweil East and Twic), SCF (Aweil East, Gogrial and Wau), Oxfam (Rumbek), and UNICEF
(Tonj, Gogrial, Aweil East and West and Yirol) continue to support community-based animal health services in Bahr El Ghazal. However lack of flight capacity during this period has prevented movement of supplies and staff into some locations. In particular, medicines issued to Adior, the area reporting Heamorrhagic septicaemia outbreaks earlier this month, have still not gone to the field due to lack of planes. Cold chain capacity is being strengthened in several locations to allow better vaccination coverage, but again is being constrained by lack of flights.
UNICEF visited Acumcum, SCF livestock programme area, to assess the impact of the current emergency on livestock resources and to identify means of increasing the contribution of livestock to food security during the current food shortages.
Water & Sanitation
Current programme updates:
Following an assessment in Ajiep, by the UNICEF water team, which indicated that there was a need for additional water sources SCF-UK has hand drilled four boreholes and installed them with hand pumps.
However reports indicate that additional water points are still necessary following the continuing influx of people. As a short-term respite the possibility of drawing water from the River Jur, which is about 3-4km away, and treating it using a simple water treatment system is being explored.
The number of unaccompanied and vulnerable children in Acumcum and Mapel has increased from 1,000 in May to almost 2,000, with 811 in Mapel and 1,090 in Acumcum. Out of the 2000 children almost 30% have no relatives and live either in some form of loose family attachment or in vulnerable families.
The increase in the number of UAMs and vulnerable children is explained by the fact that many of the displaced people have returned to Wau town abandoning their children or leaving them in care of vulnerable family members.
Interventions are being planned for Akon, Ajiep and Lunyaker where it has been reported there are unaccompanied minors.
Six psychosocial workers are being sent Mapel and Acumcum to begin the process of counseling the unaccompanied minors. An additional nurse has been employed to assist SCF in the nutritional and health screening of the minors in the centre at Acumcum.
SCF UK has set up two communal kitchens that accommodate some of the unaccompanied minors in collaboration with the local authorities and women's groups. The partners have agreed to upgrade the screening of the children accepted to the communal kitchens and to intensify the tracing and family reunification while continuing to provide nutritional and health services. A total of six Sudanese staff will be recruited to assist in registration and tracing of children.
According to statistics provided by SCF UK, the breakdown of the unaccompanied and vulnerable children is as follows:
Mapel: Abandoned children
living at the center 256
Children eating in the
center but living outside 240 Children being interviewed 315
at the center 384
Children only eating
in the center 297
Children being interviewed 409
Western Upper Nile
Household Food Security
Seeds and Tools
Following a low flying SCF assessment it was reported that Leer, Mankien, Nimne and Koch continue to experience dry weather. Reports on crop conditions are not encouraging. Crop establishment was good (15 to 25 cm high), however, following the erratic rain the sorghum has begun to dry up. Zeraf Island and Chotobora are also affected by the current dry weather. In Bieh State, Lankien and Motot north and east of Waat town respectively, no crops are visible. From Motot town towards the west going into Phou State, the crop situation appears to be better.
In Bor County and the southern locations of Liech State, Nyal and Panyagor rains have started. MSF-H reported these two locations with un-landable wet airstrips on the second week of July. Further north towards the Sobat river basin, some rain has been reported. However, in the Zeraf island area there were no crops observed. Currently, populations of Zeraf and Old Fangak have access to fish.
VSF-CH is continuing its community-based animal health programmes in Mankien, Nyal and Ganyliel.
Duar, Nhialdiu and Wichok are not being served due to insecurity.
The following incidents affected OLS personnel in Bahr El Ghazal and Western Upper Nile during the period 15 – 30 July: