USAID raises alarm over severe drought in Somalia

The United States  Development Agency USAID has raised an alarm over an impending  severe drought in Somalia.

A statement from the organization read in part “Worsening dry conditions in Somalia have reduced pasture and water availability across Somalia’s northern regions, exacerbating food, health, and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) needs”.

The agency added that more than 1.5 million people will likely face Crisis or worse levels of food insecurity through June as a result of below-average October-to-December deyr rainfall, higher than normal temperatures during the ongoing jilal dry season, protracted conflict, and residual effects from the 2016/2017 drought.

On January 21, the Federal Government of Somalia (FGoS) and the UN launched the 2019 Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) for Somalia, requesting nearly $1.1 billion to deliver humanitarian assistance to 3.4 million people.

The population in need of humanitarian assistance represents an approximately 30 percent decrease from 2018.

Bureaucratic impediments and insecurity continue to constrain humanitarian access and disrupt relief operations in Somalia. The UN recorded more than 120 violent incidents affecting 65 humanitarian personnel in Somalia in 2018.