Kenya, Somalia: United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Briefing Notes

East Africa floods

  • Floods in Kenya have displaced more than 260,000 people and killed at least 100, according to the Red Cross in Kenya this morning.
  • The highest numbers of displaced people are reported in Tana River, Turkana, Mandera and Kilifi counties.
  • The major humanitarian concern, beyond the displacement, is disease outbreaks, particularly cholera and chikungunya, a mosquito-borne disease.
  • Since the beginning of 2018, cholera has been reported in 15 counties in Kenya and five counties still having active cholera transmission. Nearly 3,000 cholera cases, including 55 deaths, had been reported by the end of April. Flooding exacerbates cholera outbreaks and increase the risk of vector-borne diseases, which also include malaria and dengue fever.
  • Kenya Red Cross and the Government, including the armed forces, are in the lead of the response with support from UN agencies, notably UNICEF at this point. The humanitarian country team is now discussing how to further support the response.
  • In neighbouring Somalia, heavy rains and flooding in the Juba and Shabelle river basins have displaced some 215,000 people. Overall, 630,000 people have been affected by flash floods and the Juba and Shabelle rivers bursting their banks. Baidoa and Belet Wayne in central Somalia are among the worst-hit districts. The President of Somalia has described the situation in Belet Weyne as a national disaster and appealed for international assistance.
  • Humanitarian partners have stepped up the flood response and are providing food, water, sanitation and hygiene, health services and shelter. It is estimated that US$16 million is urgently required to avert a humanitarian crisis.
  • The Somalia Humanitarian Response Plan 2018 is only 19 per cent funded out of $1.5 billion requested.


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