May 22, 2024

US$2.6 billion to assist 7.6 million people in Somalia – Humanitarian Partners

John Cain in Nigeria

The 2023 Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) for Somalia, which seeks US$2.6 billion to assist approximately 7.6 million people, was released today by the United Nations and humanitarian partners in Somalia, in addition to the Federal and State Governments. Nearly half of the population, 8.25 million, requires immediate protection and humanitarian assistance that can save their lives. According to current forecasts, famine is a strong possibility from April to June and beyond if humanitarian assistance is not sustained and the subsequent rains perform poorly.

“The efforts of local communities and the scale up of humanitarian assistance prevented famine thresholds from being surpassed in 2022, but millions of lives remain on the line,” said Mr. Adam Abdelmoula, Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia.

The longest and most severe drought in Somalia’s recent history has devasted the nation with five dry seasons in a row. More than 1.4 million people have been forced from their homes as a result of the drought, which has also resulted in the deaths of at least 3.5 million animals. As a result, livelihoods have been destroyed, and children have less access to milk. The situation is extremely alarming, even though technical famine thresholds have not been reached: Extremely long and severe weather has led to more deaths than usual, and excess mortality will continue to rise unless crucial sectors receive additional support.

Between April and June, 8.3 million people will likely experience high levels of acute food insecurity, with over 727,000 likely to face catastrophic conditions, as a result of an anticipated reduction in funding for humanitarian assistance. Services for sanitation, hygiene, and safe water are unavailable to about 8 million people. Acute malnutrition has increased, and reported cases of cholera and measles have increased in comparison to recent years. Humanitarian needs continue to be driven by conflict and insecurity.

“The people of Somalia are paying the price for a climate emergency they did very little to create create,” said Mr. Salah Jama, Deputy Prime Minister, Federal Government of Somalia. “The Federal and State governments, local communities and the Somali private sector and diaspora are working with the international community to assist the most vulnerable people in the areas with highest needs. I urge all partners to support these lifesaving efforts.”

In 2022, humanitarian organizations, local communities, and government officials will have reached 7.3 million people; however, they will require additional resources and unimpeded access to those in need.

“I thank our donors who generously funded the 2022 HRP and urge more donors to step up and frontload their support. Any delay in assistance is a matter of life or death for people in need,” said Mr. Abdelmoula. “We must also invest in livelihoods, resilience, infrastructure development, climate adaptation and durable solutions to break the cycle of chronic and recurrent humanitarian crises in Somalia and ensure that those affected can adapt and thrive.”