Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN) Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN)

Southern African Region and Response Plan
February 2008
United Nations (UN)

Current situation
  • Above-normal rainfall recorded across southern Africa over last 4 months.
  • 449,000 people now affected, 110,000 hectares destroyed.
  • Mozambique already in response mode.
Regional characteristics
  • Widespread loss of crops, food stocks and livelihoods.
  • At least 120,000 displaced throughout (more than 80 % in Mozambique).
  • Incidence of water-borne disease rising (700 reported cases of cholera in Malawi; more being reported).
  • Many at heightened vulnerability from combined effects of 2007 and 2008 floods.
  • High HIV prevalence rates in affected areas.
Response so far...
  • All Governments in appeal are first responders
    • Mozambique - search & rescue, evacuation and resettlement.
    • Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi – food distribution and other contingency.

  • USD 4.29M CERF grants already disbursed to Mozambique.
  • Governments and agencies have accelerated relief stock pre-positioning.
Emerging risks and vulnerabilities
  • Above-normal rains likely for several months to come in river basins in southern Africa (Zambezi, Pungwe, Save, Buzi & Limpopo).
  • Further cyclones are also expected.
  • Lake Kariba dam floodgates will open today (11th February).
Most Likely Scenario

The region will receive above normal rainfall until April 2008, which combined with this rainy season’s early onset and the potential likelihood of cyclones making landfall before its conclusion, will cause further flood related displacement and damage.
  • Already affected and 'at risk' population in the region now 1,254,000 persons.
  • Worst case is 2,800,000 persons.
Critical Needs
  • Food and nutrition is a primary concern given loss of food stocks and livelihoods (28% of appeal).
  • Water, sanitation and health remain critical concerns given increased disease risks (17 %).
  • Shelter for the displaced (11 %).
  • Recovery needs to come; in Mozambique may increase depending on the nature of sustainable resettlement for the displaced.
  • Risks are known and imminent.
  • Procurement lead times for relief stocks are 1-4 months; access is reducing.
  • 449,000 need assistance now, preparedness needed for 805,000 who are likely to be in need over the coming weeks.
  • Opportunity to act to mitigate and prevent disaster now (learning from 2007).

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