The Somali government’s humanitarian branches and the UN humanitarian agency on Monday launched an appeal for 80 million dollars to assist flood victims following heavy rainfall pounding the Horn of Africa nation.
In a joint statement released, both the Somali and UN relief organisations said the funds will help them provide immediate help for people affected by recent flooding in the country’s central and south, resulting from the heaviest rainfall experienced in over three decades.
Peter de Clercq, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia, said the 80 million dollars is a fraction of what humanitarian agencies require to address the existing case load prior to the onset of the flooding.
“Unlike in 2017, when funding came in very early in the year to support the famine prevention, less than 370 million dollars has been recorded to date in 2018,’’ de Clercq said.
The UN official said the appeal fell within a broader appeal made at the start of 2018 for 1.5 billion dollars for the humanitarian needs of over five million people affected by drought and conflict across the country.
The flooding came against the backdrop of ongoing efforts to address the effects of previous consecutive drought seasons which left no fewer than 5.4 million people in need of humanitarian assistance.
The first half of Somalia’s Gu rainy season, which started in March, has recorded an unprecedented amount of rainfall, comparable only to heavy rains last witnessed in Somalia in 1981.
The flooding has led to fatalities, massive displacement, and damage to infrastructure and cropland, compounding an already fragile humanitarian situation.
OCHA added that over 750,000 people were estimated to have been affected by the flooding, adding over 229,000 are displaced.