Panafrican News Agency

UN warns millions of south Sudanese face dire humanitarian situation

Khartoum, Sudan (PANA)- The United Nations on Monday warned that urgent funding was needed as "multiple interconnected shocks plight the people of South Sudan Humanitarian impact leaves millions lives at risk".

A press release by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) complained that saving humanitarian operations had been either suspended, reduced, or would be terminated if the funding situation remained as it was.

It said current estimates indicated that US$400 million dollars was urgently required to provide minimum humanitarian services to alleviate people’s immediate needs.

The UN body warned that If not addressed, these funding gaps would "leave millions of the most vulnerable people" at risk of losing access to vital humanitarian assistance and protection.

 The humanitarian context in South Sudan is daunting and is the worst that it has ever been. Everything including protection of women and girls, food, nutrition, and shelter, is needed.

There are over two million people displaced in South Sudan, and absence of funding means that those in camps risk to be left in critical need of water, sanitation and hygiene, and health services.

The lack of safety and security will further deepen these risks. The resources have dwindled, but lives should not , Ms. Sara Beysolow Nyanti, Humanitarian Coordinator for South Sudan, was quoted by the release received by PANA in Khartoum as saying Monday.

The UN added that for over a decade, the people of South Sudan faced multiple crises. People’s lives have been shattered by years of conflict, social and political instability, unprecedented climate shocks, ongoing violence, frequent displacements, the impact of COVID-19 pandemic, food insecurity and multiple disease outbreaks.

In South Sudan, some 8.9 million people, more than two-thirds of the population, are estimated to need significant humanitarian assistance and protection in 2022.

The Humanitarian Response Plan requests US$1.7 billion to target 6.8 million people with life-saving assistance and protection services.

Currently, the humanitarian response plan is funded only at 27 per cent, almost 14 per cent of which was funded by the OCHA-managed Pooled Funds Central Emergency Response Fund and South Sudan Humanitarian Fund.

“With such funding gaps, vulnerable suffer more and humanitarian partners are forced to prioritize, making heart-wrenching choices between severe needs. We cannot give up because the cost of inaction is too high, and people in need cannot afford to pay this price.

"We need urgent funds, and are appealing to the world to remember the most vulnerable in South Sudan,” stated Ms. Nyanti.

The funding gaps are across all humanitarian interventions in the country and severe consequences are likely if urgent financing is not secured. The lack of funding for nutrition support will immediately leave 127,000 children, and 115,000 pregnant or lactating women without vital treatment services.

It predicted that an estimated 1.9 million people will not have access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene services without more funds. As a consequence, illness is likely to rise, placing an increased burden on health facilities and drive rising trends of malnutrition. 

-0- PANA MO/RA 4July2022