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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
06NAIROBI1652
2006-04-13 15:12:00
UNCLASSIFIED
Embassy Nairobi
Cable title:  

HORN OF AFRICA, STATE - USAID HUMANITARIAN

Tags:   EAID  ECON  PHUM  PREF  PREL  IGAD  CENTCOM  KE 
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VZCZCXYZ0013
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHNR #1652/01 1031512
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 131512Z APR 06
FM AMEMBASSY NAIROBI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1020
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA PRIORITY 8418
RUEHDJ/AMEMBASSY DJIBOUTI PRIORITY 4120
INFO RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA PRIORITY 3854
RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
						UNCLAS NAIROBI 001652 

SIPDIS

AIDAC

DEPT HHS WASHDC, PRIORITY
CDC ATLANTA GA PRIORITY
USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL PRIORITY
CJTF HOA PRIORITY
DEPT OF AGRICULTURE WASHDC PRIORITY
USDA FAS WASHDC PRIORITY

SIPDIS

STATE FOR AF/E, AF/EPS, AF/PD, EB, PRM/AF, IO
AID FOR A/AID, AA/DCHA, WGARVELINK, LROGERS, MHESS,
DCHA/OTI,
DCHA/OFDA FOR GGOTTLIEB, MMARX, IMACNAIRN, KCHANNELL
DCHA/FFP FOR JDWORKEN, JDRUMMOND, TANDERSON, DNELSON,
SBRADLEY
AID/EGAT FOR AA/EGAT, JSCHAFER, JTURK
AFR/EA FOR JBORNS, SMCCLURE
ADDIS ABABA FOR TIM STUFFT
DJIBOUTI FOR JSCHULMAN
ROME FOR FODAG
GENEVA FOR NKYLOH
BRUSSELS FOR PLERNER
NSC FOR JMELINE

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: EAID ECON PHUM PREF PREL IGAD CENTCOM KE
SO, DY, ET
SUBJECT: HORN OF AFRICA, STATE - USAID HUMANITARIAN
UPDATE NUMBER 4

REF: A)STATE 27057; B)NAIROBI 00968; C)NAIROBI 01238 D)

NAIROBI 01445

This is the fourth update cable in response to Ref A
request for biweekly reports on the humanitarian
situation in the Horn of Africa. USAID Missions in
Kenya and Ethiopia, REDSO (Somalia, Djibouti), and
OFDA/ECARO contributed to this report.

SPECIAL REPORT

UNCLAS NAIROBI 001652

SIPDIS

AIDAC

DEPT HHS WASHDC, PRIORITY
CDC ATLANTA GA PRIORITY
USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL PRIORITY
CJTF HOA PRIORITY
DEPT OF AGRICULTURE WASHDC PRIORITY
USDA FAS WASHDC PRIORITY

SIPDIS

STATE FOR AF/E, AF/EPS, AF/PD, EB, PRM/AF, IO
AID FOR A/AID, AA/DCHA, WGARVELINK, LROGERS, MHESS,
DCHA/OTI,
DCHA/OFDA FOR GGOTTLIEB, MMARX, IMACNAIRN, KCHANNELL
DCHA/FFP FOR JDWORKEN, JDRUMMOND, TANDERSON, DNELSON,
SBRADLEY
AID/EGAT FOR AA/EGAT, JSCHAFER, JTURK
AFR/EA FOR JBORNS, SMCCLURE
ADDIS ABABA FOR TIM STUFFT
DJIBOUTI FOR JSCHULMAN
ROME FOR FODAG
GENEVA FOR NKYLOH
BRUSSELS FOR PLERNER
NSC FOR JMELINE

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: EAID ECON PHUM PREF PREL IGAD CENTCOM KE
SO, DY, ET
SUBJECT: HORN OF AFRICA, STATE - USAID HUMANITARIAN
UPDATE NUMBER 4

REF: A)STATE 27057; B)NAIROBI 00968; C)NAIROBI 01238 D)

NAIROBI 01445

This is the fourth update cable in response to Ref A
request for biweekly reports on the humanitarian
situation in the Horn of Africa. USAID Missions in
Kenya and Ethiopia, REDSO (Somalia, Djibouti), and
OFDA/ECARO contributed to this report.

SPECIAL REPORT


1. Michael Hess, Assistant Administrator for DCHA,
visited Kenya from April 7 - 13, on the first leg of a
trip to Djibouti and Ethiopia to assess and bring
attention to the drought and pastoralist crisis in the
Horn of Africa. Mr. Hess traveled to the drought
affected towns of Mandera and El Wak, and saw the
situation firsthand. Although rains had started, there
was recognition that this would not be enough to restore
livelihoods, and recovery would take years, and also
require some livelihood diversification. Mr. Hess also
traveled to Makueni and Kitui, a marginal agriculture
zone that showed not only northeast Kenya faced food
security crises, where he saw water harvesting projects
being implemented by USAID partners German Agro Action
and ADRA. Mr. Hess met NGO, UN, GOK and donor officials
to discuss drought response strategy recognizing that
long-term efforts to improve governance and reduce
poverty were as equally important as the immediate

response. A key issue that emerged was that information
sharing and coordination needed to be improved. As a
immediate activity, OFDA and REDSO will work with donors
to undertake a mapping exercise of drought response to
date.


COUNTRY REPORTS


2. KENYA

UPDATE ON THE HUMANITARIAN/DIPLOMATIC FRONT: The long-
awaited long-rains have started in drought-affected
northeastern pastoral districts and eastern marginal
agricultural areas. Heavy rains have also been reported
in most of the western, southern and coastal areas and
some districts in northeastern and eastern Kenya. The
heavy downpours resulted in flash floods around the Lake
Victoria region and other areas including Nairobi,
causing material damage to crops and household
properties.

Although the start of the long-rains in the pastoralist
areas is a positive indicator of a potential improvement
in the current humanitarian crisis, it is too early to
determine its overall effect on livelihoods. On the
other hand, continuous heavy downpours could prevent the
grass from sprouting, thereby, having little impact on
improved pasture availability.

DONOR RESPONSE UPDATE: More recent non-USG pledges to
the WFP EMOP include $3.6 million from UN/OCHA's
recently established Central Emergency Response Fund
(CERF), $740K from Australia, and $170K from Belgium.

At present, over 46% of the total EMOP requirement ($225
million) has been resourced. To date the FFP
contribution towards the EMOP for FY 06 is 69,590MT
valued at $50 million, which includes the most recent
contribution of $18 million.

UPDATE ON THE FOOD SECURITY SITUATION AND OUTLOOK: The
onset of the long-rains has brought some immediate
relief to the pastoralists, as it reduced the trekking
distance in search of water. However, well above normal
(130 mm of rains was reported in Marsabit within 10
days) rains within one week has also resulted in an
upsurge of livestock mortality due to pneumonia and
other water borne diseases. Even if the long-rains are
sustained throughout the season, the enormous
detrimental effect of successive poor seasons,
characterized by massive livestock mortality and loss of
livelihoods, suggest that the vast majority of
pastoralists will require longer-term livelihoods
support to withstand future climatic shocks effectively
and build resilience.

In addition to climatic factors, limited purchasing
power, political marginalization (in the pastoralist
context), limited livelihood options and vulnerability,
and chronic poverty explain the "complex food
insecurity" scenario in Kenya's ASAL region.

Reports indicate that the long-rains were also followed
by an outbreak of armyworms in some coastal and high
potential western districts. At least for the time
being, the Ministry of Agriculture appears to have the
situation under control, having supplied affected
districts with chemicals and sprayers and monitoring the
situation.

WFP reported that continued heavy downpours could
disrupt relief food distributions in northeastern
pastoral areas where infrastructure is extremely poor
and some roads could become impassable.

OTHER TOPICS OF SPECIAL INTEREST: Both the GOK and
donors are taking this crisis as an opportunity to
improve understanding of the factors underlying repeated
food crises in the country and identifying new
approaches and strategies to break the cycle of relief
dependency. However, the high-level meeting on chronic
vulnerability and recurrent drought which was planned to
take place on April 11, 2006 has now been postponed
until after the cabinet deliberates on the ASAL draft
policy, expected to be tabled soon.


3. ETHIOPIA

UPDATE ON THE HUMANITARIAN/DIPLOMATIC FRONT: The
Government of Ethiopia's (GOE) Disaster Prevention and
Preparedness Agency (DPPA) has issued the final results
of the reassessment conducted in March in the Borena
Zone of the Oromiya Region. DPPA has raised the
beneficiary figures to 343,600 beneficiaries, from the
original 155,000. DPPA is also conducting reassessments
in Afder and Liben Zones of the Somali Region. Results
are expected within the next week. In Liben Zone, the


reassessment team is recommending beneficiary numbers be
increased by 46,500, from 172,433, but the GOE has not
yet approved or released the final beneficiary number.

USAID/Ethiopia's Pastoralist Livelihoods Initiative
(PLI) partners have now vaccinated over 1.78 million
animals against anthrax, pasteurellosis, petite ruminant
pneumonia. A total of 219,000 animals were treated for
parasites. PLI partners continue towards the goal of
off-taking 153,000 animals from the market place by the
end of May. Additionally, 3,000 animals have been
restocked, and 86,000 animals are being fed or will be
fed by the end of May in commercial herd maintenance
programs.

Massive campaigns against measles, led by UNICEF, began
the last week in March, and will vaccinate almost
900,000 children in drought affected areas.
International NGOs are supporting the campaign to
increase quality and coverage. The measles campaign is
of great significance as measles has been a primary form
of mortality in past droughts, particularly in the 2000
drought.

From April 3 to 7, 2006, a joint USG assessment team,
consisting of a CDC Epidemiologist, USAID/OFDA Food
Security Advisor, and USAID/Ethiopia Program Assistant
traveled to drought-affected areas of Afder and Liban
zones, Somali Region. At the time of the visit, it had
just started raining, and this was expected to improve
conditions for residents in the short-term. However,
significant rainfall of sufficient quantity and
duration, and several months time will be needed for
pastoralists and their animals to rebound from the
combined shocks of the recent jilaal dry season and the
failed deyr rains that preceded it. Additional details
of the assessment team's findings will be reported
septel.

DONOR RESPONSE UPDATE: FFP/W authorized an additional
12,250 metric tons to Save the Children USA to expand
emergency relief food distributions in the Somali
Region. The food will be distributed directly by
Save/USA to beneficiaries affected by the current
drought emergency, and will allow Save/USA to expand
into 5 additional woredas experience emergency
situation.

UPDATE ON THE FOOD SECURITY SITUATION AND OUTLOOK: Good
rains have started in all drought stricken areas, except
for a few pocket areas in Warder Zone of the Somali
Region. Field, satellite, and station reports indicate
fair to good rains during the first week of April.
Unfortunately, rains have been torrential in some areas
causing flooding. Food distribution has been stopped in
some woredas, namely Chereti woreda, of the Somali
Region due to inaccessibility. Water tanking has
stopped in almost all woredas, as some areas are
inaccessible due to the rains and the rains have filled
birkas and ponds. Flooding has claimed the lives of
livestock and destroyed homes in parts of Afar and
Borena Zone in Somali region, but estimates on the
magnitude of the damage do not yet exist as this time.


Livestock deaths have increased sharply with the first
rains, either due to pneumonia and other diseases or due
to their stomachs not being able to digest new pasture
in their weakened state. Cattle have comprised the
majority of deaths, as shoats and camels have weathered
the drought much better. If the rains continue, the
condition of surviving livestock is expected to markedly
improve.

The health sector is being monitored for disease
outbreaks after the first rains. Many water points that
have just refilled are contaminated with fecal matter,
and their have been reports of limited bloody diarrhea
in two woredas in the Somali Region. The conditions are
conducive for an outbreak, but no major outbreaks have
been reported at this time.

A continued focus on health and nutrition still remains
a critical concern. While response actions are only
just getting finalized and operational in some areas, it
may be necessary to adjust these new programs towards a
recovery-focused strategy. In addition, coordination of
nutrition and health, water/sanitation related
activities/issues need to be better coordinated with
regional health authorities.


4. SOMALIA

UPDATE ON THE HUMANITARIAN/DIPLOMATIC FRONT: The
FEWS/FSAU Rain Watch for April 2-8 reports heavy rains
over much of southern and parts of northwest Somalia. In
the south, with the exception of parts of Hiran Region
and Adale and Warsheikh Districts (Middle Shabele), most
areas received good rains. Gedo, Middle Juba, Lower
Juba, Bay and parts of Lower Shabele received heavy
rains with totals of up to 70 mm. Rains replenished
water sources and prompted large migrations of
pastoralists from riverine and farming areas into the
traditional grazing areas in the hinterland. The upper
catchments of Juba and Shabele rivers in the Ethiopian
highlands have also received heavy rains, increasing
river levels in Somalia. Although rains were good so
far, the overall performance of the rainy season will
not be known until late April/early May.

DONOR RESPONSE UPDATE: Other recent donor contributions
to WFP include Canada $1m (Canadian dollars); DFID
$5.2m; Swiss $378,000; Norway $200,000; Netherlands
$482,000; African Dev Bank $500,000 (pending); and Italy
US$1.076.

UPDATE ON THE FOOD SECURITY SITUATION AND OUTLOOK: A
multi-agency team including FSAU and FEWS conducted a
nutritional survey and food security assessment March 22
- 30, in all six districts of Gedo Region. Results show
a global acute malnutrition (weight for height