Ethiopia: Ethiopia Weekly Humanitarian Bulletin, 11 April 2016

Key Issues

  • The number of priority 1 woredas increased from 186 (December 2015) to 219 (March 2016), indicative of a deteriorated humanitarian situation.

  • The National Disaster Risk Management Commission reactivated the National Flood Taskforce on 7 April, following flooding in three regions.

  • As of the end of March, 101,333 individuals or 1/3 of the people displaced between August 2015 and March 2016 by the El Niño-caused climate change, returned to their places of origin.

  • Ethiopia’s refugee operation is faced with significant funding shortfalls, with only 10 per cent of the US$280 million funding requirements funded.

  • The European Commission announced €122.5 million euro for Ethiopia to address the immediate needs of people affected by the El Niño-driven drought and to support early recovery interventions.

Ethiopia is responding to an El Niño-caused drought emergency: The El Niño global climactic event has wreaked havoc on Ethiopia’s summer rains. This comes on the heels of failed spring rains, and has driven food insecurity, malnutrition and water shortages in affected areas of the country. A well-coordinated response is already underway and expanding rapidly, although the scale of the developing emergency exceeds resources available to date. Given the lead times necessary for the procurement of relief items, the Government and its international partners have called for early action to this slow onset natural disaster.

NDRMC releases the revised humanitarian hotspot classification

The National Disaster Risk Management Commission’s (NDRMC) Emergency Nutrition Coordination Unit released the March humanitarian hotspot classification. In total, 443 woredas were prioritized in all three categories, up from 429 woredas in the December 2015 classification. The number of priority 1 woredas increased from 186 (December) to 219 (March); the number of priority 2 woredas decreased from 154 (December) to 147 (March); and the number of priority 3 woredas decreased from 89 (December) to 77 (March). The December classification considered all-inclusive sector indicators, including Agriculture, Child Protection and Gender Based Violence, Education, Health, Market, Nutrition and WaSH.

Flood Taskforce reactivated following localized flooding

Localized heavy rains in the past weeks caused torrential flooding in riverine areas in Afar (Megale and Dallol woredas, Zone 2), Amhara (Woldia woreda, North Wollo zone), and Somali (Jijiga) regions. More than 15 people reportedly died, eight people went missing and many more injured. Houses and livelihoods were also destroyed. Flooding was also reported in Arsi zone, Oromia region on 9 April. The National Disaster Risk Management Commission reactivated the National Flood Taskforce on 7 April. The Taskforce is preparing a Flood Alert and a contingency plan for appropriate preparedness measures in flood-prone areas. Multi-sector, multi-agency rapid assessment teams will be deployed to flood-affected areas in Afar, Amhara and Somali regions this week to identify food and non-food needs, map-out on-going responses and highlight gaps.

On 31 March, the National Meteorology Agency (NMA) stated that the performance of the belg rains, thus far erratic, will improve from April onwards. The forecast indicated that Amhara, Oromia, SNNP, Somali and Tigray regions will receive significant amounts of rain. This will benefit belg farming and improve water and pasture conditions in pastoralist areas. More than 2.2 million hectares of land is expected to be cultivated during this belg season according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

1/3 of the August-March IDP caseload returned to their places of origin

IOM’s March Internal Displacement report indicated that 56,429 people (52 per cent men) in Afar, Amhara, Gambella, Oromia and Somali regions were newly displaced in March 2016, down from 57,832 newly displaced in February 2016 (see chart. Source: IOM). The majority of the March displacements were attributed to people moving in search of water and pasture in Afar, Somali and Amhara regions. This brings the number of people displaced in the country to 639,262 (503,668 protracted and 135,594 new).

As of the end of March, 101,333 individuals or one third of the people displaced between August 2015 and March 2016 by the El Niño-caused climate change, returned to their places of origin.

Only 10 per cent of the refugee operation funded

Ethiopia’s refugee operation is faced with significant funding shortfalls, with only 10 per cent of the US$280 million funding requirements funded as of the end of March. Ethiopia hosts 735,165 refugees from neighboring countries, the majority from South Sudan. For more information, contact: ocha-eth@un.org

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