WFP seeks funds for 750,000 flood victims

WFP seeks funds for 750,000 flood victims
Mathew Hollingworth, WFP Country Director (photo credit: courtesy)

The World Food Programme [WFP] is seeking support for the 750,000 people affected by the flood across the country.
The agency described the raging flood as a threat that could reverse the gains made in food security.

More than 750,000 people in 31 counties across eight states have been affected by the floods. Out of this number, 365,000 people have been displaced.

In Unity State alone, local authorities indicate that almost 90 per cent of the state is underwater, leaving very few safe havens for displaced people.

Getting worse

The Country Acting Director of WFP, Adeyinka Badejo, said in a statement released yesterday that the climate emergency is real in South Sudan, adding that if left uncontrolled, it could push more people deeper into poverty and hunger.

“WFP is re-prioritising and redirecting its resources to respond to this new crisis. We are delivering vital food and supplies by air to people in areas that have been cut off by floods,” Badejo said.

“Humanitarian needs in South Sudan continue to outpace resources, and WFP is at risk of running out of funds to continue its vital emergency operations and livelihoods programs,” he added.

He said for the next six months, WFP needs US$568 million to maintain its operations.

Badejo said the catastrophic floods come on top of continuing conflict, economic crisis and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

He added the WFP works across all pathways of emergency relief and early recovery and development to create an enabling environment for the people of South Sudan and equip them with the tools to build a future for generations to come.

According to the WFP statement, the organisation is reaching out to 300,000 people which is 40 per cent of those heavily impacted by recurring floods in South Sudan.

Badejo said the local communities were being supported to adapt and recover from climate shocks through the construction of dykes to control floodwaters and protect farmlands.

In April 2021, a total of 700,000 refugees and internally displaced persons in South Sudan raised concerns after the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced a food rationing move.

The food aid agency said the funding gap had forced its arm into making drastic measures that will come at a pinch to the victims in dire need of food assistance.

The refugees and IDPs were subjected to 70 per cent food rationing that was later decreased to a 50 per cent dock. That implied that they were receiving 1,050 kilocalories per person instead of the initial 2,100 kilocalories per person.

Matthew Hollingworth, the WFP Representative and Country Director in South Sudan lamented the tough decision but gave a justification for it.