Flooding in Rann, Borno State, Nigeria. Credit: GISCOR
Flooding has once again hit areas of northeast Nigeria, severely affecting thousands of people in Borno State. Meanwhile the flood situation in neighbouring Adamawa state continues, with almost 20,000 people displaced.
The UN says the floods in Borno and Adamawa state are the worst in seven years. About 300,000 people have been affected so far this year, which is five times more than expected.
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA), flooding in the town of Rann, Borno State, has affected around 40,000 people, leaving them with little or no access to food or services. Many of those affected are internally displaced people (IDPs) living in refugee camps.
Flooding began on 07 November, 2019, after the River Kaalia broke its banks in neighbouring Cameroon. Parts of Far North Region in Cameroon were hit by flooding in late October.
UN OCHA reports that flooding has damaged an estimated 4,000 hectares of farmland, “destroying crops that are the main source of food for internally displaced persons (IDPs) staying in Rann, a remote town in an area where violent attacks from non-State armed groups are frequent and access is difficult for humanitarian assistance due to the high insecurity and poor road conditions.”
“Stranded populations are running short of food and those who can afford it are paying high sums to be transported to the other areas, also putting their life at risk while crossing the river or travelling to safety. More than 300 people from Rann have managed to reach Ngala, a town some 40 km away, according to the International Organization for Migration. They had managed to leave Rann before the road became impassable,” the UN added.
Humanitarian partners are mobilizing resources to reach the stranded population via the UN Humanitarian Air Services until access is secured for small boats. Providing food is the main priority, along with water, shelters and emergency health services.
In neighbouring Adamawa State, more than 100,000 people are also affected by severe flooding across seven Local Government Areas since 27 October, following torrential rainfall and overflow of water from the Niger and Benue rivers. Around 19,000 people have been displaced from their homes.
The UN and humanitarian partners are scaling up assistance in Adamawa State as well and have already provided reproductive health kits to more than 56,000 people; non-food items to 400 families; and farming items to 4,000 families in areas that were not reached by Government assistance.
Courtesy of floodlist.com
Flood damage in Bangui Central African Republic, late October 2019. Photo: Equipe Nationale de Réponse aux Catastrophe de la CRCA
Around 40,000 people have been displaced by flooding along the Ubangi River in northern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
Flooding began in October after a period of heavy rain caused the Ubangi River to break its banks in parts of Sud-Ubangi and Nord-Ubangi provinces in DRC. Thousands of people were also displaced in neighbouring areas of Central Africa Republic during this time.
In DRC the worst hit area is the town of Zongo in Sud-Ubangi province, situated on the south bank of the Ubangi River, across from Bangui in the Central African Republic. Libenge in Sud-Ubangi province has also been badly affected.
At least 1 person is thought to have died in the floods. In Sud-Ubangi province 14,200 houses have been damaged, along with 12 schools, 21 bridges, 48 public buildings and wide areas of crops, according to local media. Around 9,000 people have been displaced by the floods in neighbouring North-Ubangi province.
Heavy rain caused flash floods in Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in early October this year, leaving at least 6 people dead and around 30 houses destroyed. Further heavy rain and floods hit the city during mid-October.
Courtesy of floodlist.com/
Floods have blocked roads in floods Tana River County, Kenya, October 2019. Photo: Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS)
Flooding across Kenya in the month of October has left at least 29 people dead and affected more than 101,000, according to the UN.
In a report of 30 October, 2019, the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said heavy rain since the start of the short rains season in early October has led to riverine and flash floods, rock falls, mudslides and landslides.
More than 101,000 people have been affected, mainly in the north-eastern, central, and coastal regions, according to the Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS). Wajir County has been particularly hard-hit, with at least 43,000 people affected. Other affected counties include Marsabit, Mandera, Turkana, Elgeyo Marakwet, Kitui, Meru, Kajiado, Kwale, Nandi, Mombasa, Murang’a and Busia.
The KRCS has confirmed that at least 14,000 people have been displaced from their homes in low-lying areas where rivers have burst their banks.
At least 29 flood-related deaths have been reported and the death toll and number of people displaced is expected to rise in the days ahead as further information is received and verified from affected areas.
Nearly 400 hectares of farmland has been damaged and 21,710 livestock washed away, according to the KRCS, severely impacting livelihoods, including in areas already facing challenges due to drought.
Furthermore flooding has damaged or destroyed key infrastructure, including roads, bridges, schools and health facilities.
The UN report said: “At least 52 schools are inaccessible in Mandera and Wajir counties and some 14 health facilities cannot be reached in Mandera, Wajir and Marsabit. Many parts of Mombasa County have reported power outages caused by fallen electricity pylons or water-soaked transformers. Two bridges, including one linking Diani and Lungalunga at Kinondoni and the main bridge linking Tanzania and Kenya at Mihogoni trading centre, have been badly damaged. In Lodwar town and surrounding areas in Turkana County, nine out of 12 water boreholes were destroyed, impacting about 70,000 people.”
The rains -driven by the strong positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD)- are expected to continue in the days and weeks ahead, with most parts of the country likely to experience above average rainfall until early December 2019, according to the Kenyan Meteorological Department.
Courtesy of floodlist.com/
Homes were destroyed after floods in Eastern Region of Uganda, October 2019. Photo: Uganda Red Cross
More flooding has affected the Eastern Region of Uganda, leaving hundreds homeless. This is the third spate of flooding and rain-related disasters since June this year.
Heavy rain in Western Region last week destroyed homes and left at least 3 people dead in Kasese district.
Flooding in Eastern Region began around 18 October after a period of heavy rain. The situation was worsened by the overflowing Manafwa river.
According to the Uganda Red Cross, homes have been damaged and some completely destroyed affecting around 650 households in the district of Butaleja and around 300 households in Bulambuli. The districts of Bududa and Sironko have also been affected.
Irene Nakasiita, Spokesperson for Uganda Red Cross said flooding has left “roads cut off, bridges submerged, some washed away, over 100 houses collapsed, crops and other sources of livelihood destroyed.”
Deadly flooding and landslides hit Bulambuli district in August 2019. Earlier in the year at least 5 people died after heavy rain triggered landslides in Eastern Region in June.
Meanwhile in the country’s Western Region, local media reported that 3 people died after heavy rain in the district of Kasese on 13 October, 2019. Homes were destroyed leaving many families to take shelter in a church.
Courtesy of floodlist.com
Flooding began in early October 2019 in the Diffa Region of Niger. Photo: UNOCHA
Media in Niger, quoting officials from the Diffa Region, said the Komadougou river in Niger broke its banks in early October, forcing 23,000 people to flee their homes.
The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) in Niger warned on 18 October that levels of the Komadougou in Diffa were more than 60cm above alert stage.
Across the region crops, farmland and homes have suffered damage. Some villages on the outskirts of the city of Diffa have been completely submerged.
Flooding was seen in Niger as early as June this year, but worsened from September, severely affecting communities in the regions of Maradi, Zinder and Agadez, as well as Dosso and the capital Niamey.
In a statement of 10 September, government authorities said that that the ongoing floods had resulted in 57 deaths and affected 132,528 people.
By late September the situation had worsened further. UNOCHA reported (pdf) in late September that 16,375 houses had been destroyed and 211,000 people affected, in particular in the 3 regions of Zinder (80,534 people affected), Maradi (28,847) and Agadez (31,222).
UNOCHA said the worsening situation in September was mainly because of the heavy rains recorded in the Niger basin and the overloading of the dams containing waters in Burkina Faso and Mali.
Courtesy of floodlist.com
Despite all efforts by the locust control department, locusts continue to devour fields after fields and advance further in the state. The swarms of locusts have dealt a severe damage to the crops up to the villages very close to Jodhpur. Moreover, the northern part of Nagaur district is in the grip of locust attack and the agriculture department on Thursday remained on its toes to save the crops that are ready to be harvested.
Courtesy of timesofindia.indiatimes.com
#Drought and commercial #cattle #farming exposes tens of thousands to devastating #hunger in #Angola
The end of cattle’s paradise: How diversion of land for ranches eroded food security in the Gambos calls on the Angolan government to immediately provide emergency food assistance to the communities facing hunger, declare a moratorium on land grants, and appoint a commission of inquiry to investigate how 46 commercial farms ended up with two-thirds of the best grazing land in Tunda dos Gambos and Vale de Chimbolela since the end of civil war in 2002.
“The current drought in Angola has exposed the devastating impact of commercial cattle farming on communities in Gambos. Traditional cattle farmers have lost their best grazing land and now watch helplessly as their children and families go to bed on empty stomachs,” said Deprose Muchena, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for Southern Africa.
“The government has failed to protect the rights of these communities – in particular, their right to food. They have been left to scratch a living from infertile, unproductive land – and now as the drought tightens its grip – they have simply been left with nothing to eat.”
The report shows that hunger and starvation are rife among the Vanyaneke and Ovaherero people living in the Gambos. Colloquially this region is known as Angola’s “milk region” because cattle rearing and milk production have been central to the economy and way of life of people here.
While the semi-arid Gambos region is prone to cyclical droughts, Amnesty International found that traditional cattle breeders and their families are struggling to produce food for themselves after communal grazing land, which once mitigated against the impact of drought, was allocated by the government to commercial cattle farmers.
As a result, pastoralists are left with insufficient and unproductive land for growing food and grazing their cattle. Milk, cheese, yoghurt and meat production is the main source of their livelihoods.
Families told Amnesty International researchers that the situation is now so dire that they had resorted to eating wild leaves. Many said they suffer with sickness and diarrhea and have also developed skin conditions such as scabies due to water scarcity and poor hygienic conditions.
One pastoralist told Amnesty International that: “There is not enough milk anymore. So, we the grown-ups have given up drinking milk so that the children can still have some. As you can see, we do not look healthy and strong as we used to be. We are skinny and weak.”
Another pastoralist said that: “These days many people are becoming very sick because of hunger. Sometimes we go to Chiange to sell firewood so that we can buy some food. There is someone who died here because of hunger.”
According to the government, there are now 46 commercial livestock farms occupying 2,629km2 of the most fertile land, leaving only 1,299km2 of grazing land for the traditional cattle breeders. This translates to 67% of the land occupied by commercial farmers, leaving pastoralists with only 33% of the land.
Amnesty International found that the land, used for centuries as communal grazing land by pastoralists from southern Angola’s Cunene, Huila, and Namibe provinces, was taken away from communities without due process.
Despite this, the government has allowed commercial livestock farmers to occupy the Tunda dos Gambos and Vale de Chimbolela without giving local communities any form of compensation, clearly violating the country’s law.
Courtesy of amnesty.org
THE Khomas region is experiencing its worst drought in 90 years, according to official rainfall figures released by the Namibia Meteorological Service this week.
The region received less than a third of its normal quantity of rainfall over the past rainy season from October last year to the end of April this year. The bulk of the north-central regions of the country received about a third of their normal seasonal rainfall, and most of the Erongo, Otjozondjupa and Omaheke regions recorded less than 40% of their normal rainfall totals, figures released by the weather service show.
The Meteorological Service also reported that while the eastern parts of the Zambezi region received between 60% and 80% of their normal seasonal rainfall totals during the 2018/19 rainy season, the situation was worse in the western parts of the region, which has ended up experiencing its worst drought in the last 59 years.
At the weather service’s head office in Windhoek, 106,7 millimetres of rain was measured during the past rainy season – the lowest annual figure since 1929/30, when a seasonal total of 97 mm was recorded at the same spot.
The past rainy season has also been drier in Windhoek than during the 1981/82 season, when a total of 126,2 mm of rain was recorded at the Windhoek Met Office during a severe drought that had Namibia in its grips.
Windhoek’s total rainfall during a normal rainy season is around 355 mm.
The end-of-season rainfall bulletin also shows that the situation is even more serious at Witvlei in the Omaheke region, where only 67 mm of rain was recorded from October to April. This is 79% below the normal seasonal total of 317,7 mm.
At Steinhausen, north-west of Gobabis, a near-normal rainfall total of 317,5 mm was recorded from October to April, though – only 8% below the normal seasonal total of 343,7 mm.
At Rundu, 334 mm of rain was recorded from October 2018 to the end of April 2019 – 41% below the town’s normal seasonal rainfall total of 568,6 mm.
The rainfall total of 168,7 mm recorded at Ondangwa during the past rainy season is 63% below the town’s normal seasonal total of 450,8 mm. At Grootfontein, the seasonal total came to 230,2 mm at the end of April, which is 57% below the town’s normal figure of 540,3 mm.
In the southern part of the Kunene region, 105,6 mm of rain was recorded at Khorixas during the past rainy season. That is 52% below its normal seasonal total of 220,4 mm.
The seasonal total of 31 mm measured at Gochas is 82% lower than the normal total rainfall of 176,4 mm in that part of in the Hardap region during an average rainy season.
At Keetmanshoop, 36,2 mm of rain was measured during the past rainy season – 76% below the //Kharas town’s normal seasonal total of 151 mm.
The failed rainy season is also reflected in the levels of the main dams supplying water to Windhoek. On Monday, the Von Bach and Swakoppoort dams were storing a combined 29 million cubic metres of water – compared to about 55 million cubic metres a year ago, and more than 62 million cubic metres at the same stage in 2017.
According to the City of Windhoek, city residents again failed to meet water saving targets over the past week. While the city has set a weekly water consumption target of no more than 465 000 cubic metres, actual consumption recorded over the past week was 497 332 cubic metres of water.
Water restrictions in the city are set to be tightened from the start of July.
Courtesy of namibian.com.na
Floods in Senegal, September 2019. Photo: Senegal Red Cross
The International Federation of Red Cross And Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) reported on 02 October, 2019, that over almost 9,000 people have been affected and around 4,500 displaced by flooding and heavy rain in Senegal.
IFRC said that heavy rainfall from 10 to 17 September caused extensive damages in Rufisque and Guédiawaye departments in Dakar Region and Kaolack department in Kaolack Region
Six deaths were reported in Dakar Region, where 4 died as a result of lightning strikes and 2 from drowning in flood waters. Almost 50 people were also injured.
According to IFRC figures, a total of 500 households (around 4,500 people) have been displaced, including 136 households in Kaolack Region and 364 households in Dakar Region.
Furthermore, the flooding has led to widespread destruction of livelihoods, as farms fields have been washed away.
Courtesy of floodlist.com