INCREASE IN COVID-19 CASES AS SECOND WAVE HITS
Several countries in the region have adopted new lockdown measures to contain the COVID-19 spread, as the second wave has hit many countries in the region. An increase of cases was recorded in the last quarter of 2020 through January 2021.
Eight countries in West Africa (Benin, Burkina Faso, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mali,
Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, and Togo) have recorded their highest number of cases during the second wave. In Nigeria, cases reached a record 100,000 on January 10. A rapid increase in cases during the second wave has also been noted in Sahel countries, with 19,559 recorded cases in Central Sahel. The second wave may be potentially dangerous for many countries in the region with weak public health systems. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected over 2.7 million people in Africa and killed 65,000 in 2020.
SUICIDE ATTACK KILLS AT LEAST FIFTEEN CIVILIANS, INCLUDING FIVE CHILDREN
A suicide attack by a non-State armed group (NSAG) in Mozogo town, Mayo-Moskota subdivision in the Far North region, killed at least fifteen civilians, including five children. The Government of Cameroon and the UNICEF Executive Director issued statements condemning the attack. Mayo Moskota and the area of Mozogo in particular, are already difficult to access for humanitarian partners without armed escorts.
Following the attack, humanitarian operations in the area were put on hold.
CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
OVER 24,000 CENTRAL AFRICAN REFUGEES FLEE TO DRC
As of 7 January 2021, 24,551 individuals from the Central African Republic arrived in DRC according to local sources. These refugees, who fled insecurity and violence resulting from the presidential elections, arrived in Equateur province (about 9,000 people) and Bas-Uele province (about 15,000 people). UNHCR has strengthened its presence along the Ubangui River to respond to the needs of new arrival. There is an urgent need of water, shelter and access to health and adequate sanitation to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other diseases.
CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
HUMANITARIAN ACTIVITIES RESUME IN BANGASSOU
Humanitarian NGOs have reinstated their bases and resumed activities in Bangassou, Mbomou Prefecture, as a result of improved access following negotiations. On 11 January, an inter-agency mission assessed needs at the spontaneous IDP site the Batiste Community Health Centre (CESACOBA), located 5 km from Bangassou. Approximately 10,000 people are currently present at the site. Priority needs include food, water, sleeping mats and blankets. Hand-washing stations and latrines have been installed in recent days, and a second batch of essential medicines is being supplied. Humanitarian response is also ongoing at the spontaneous IDP site at the Bangassou Regional University Hospital.
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
AT LEAST 22 CIVILIANS KILLED DURING ATTACK IN NORTH KIVU
At least 22 civilians were killed in rebel attack on January 8 in Mwenda village, a dozen others were also kidnapped according to local officials. UN SecretaryGeneral strongly condemned the attack and reiterated his call for a global ceasefire. The situation in North-Kivu remains highly volatile, with multiple attacks on civilian, and increasingly challenging access for humanitarian actors.
Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs