West and Central Africa: Weekly Regional Humanitarian Snapshot (13 – 20 January 2021)

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
RISE IN FOOD PRICES DUE TO ESCALATING CONFLICT
According to the latest “Price monitoring Bulletin” produced by the Central African Institute for Statistics, Economic and Social Studies (ICASEES), an alarming increase in prices of basic food items has been recorded in the capital and rural towns of CAR. Prices of oil, onions, fish, and meat have increased by over 50 per cent in some places. The price of cassava, the main staple in CAR, has also increased by almost 60 per cent in rural areas. The rise in prices is due to the surge in insecurity since mid-December 2020 and the disruption of CAR’s main supply route, which extends from Bangui to Douala in Cameroon, It further puts at risk 1.9 million people – over a third of the population – who already face high levels of acute food insecurity. The disruption of the supply route also prevents the delivery of vital aid and has led to a shortage of fuel, which has been reported in several towns.
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
NEARLY 25,000 PEOPLE AFFECTED BY FLOODS IN MANIEMA
On 14 January, heavy rains and strong winds destroyed 3,000 houses and flooded nearly 2,000 others in Kindu city and Kailo Territory, in Maniema province, affecting nearly 25,000 people. Most of the affected population was displaced and is now living with host families. Many of the affected people risk contracting cholera and other diarrheal diseases due to the destruction and flooding of several family latrines, requiring urgent humanitarian assistance. Overcrowding in host families’ residences increases the risk of COVID-19 infections.
NIGER
INCREASE IN SCHOOL DROPOUTS DUE TO VIOLENCE
Since attacks on 2 January 2021 in Tchamo, Bangou and Zaroumadareye villages in the department of Ouallam, there has been an increase in school dropouts, with about 544 students having quit four schools. Additionally, on 7 January, armed groups threatened teachers in four schools in the Dargol district, leading to their closure. According to local education authorities, as of August 2020, 325 schools, out of 4,021, (equivalent to 8 per cent) had been forced to close in the region due to persisting insecurity. School closures are affecting about 29,011 students who are thus deprived of education. This exacerbates the already dire situation, since according to UNICEF, on the national level, more than 50 per cent of children aged between 7 and 16 years are not going to school.
OVER 5,000 DISPLACED FOLLOWING ATTACKS IN TAHOUA
A recent spate of armed attacks has displaced about 5,010 people from Tillia and Tassara Departments in Tahoua region. An estimated 1,512 people have found refuge in Intikane village, and 702 people have arrived in Egareck and Tachigarte villages. Moreover, 2,796 people have sought refuge in Tarissadat village. Local authorities reported that recurrent attacks following the incursion of armed elements and the fear of retaliation clashes forced people to flee. Action Contre la Faim (ACF) is leading Rapid Response Mechanism assessments in the region to identify affected people’s needs and enable an effective response.

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

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