News / Africa

Greater Tragedy Looms Over South Sudan, Aid Officials Warn

Internally displaced people carry water from outside as they walk toward the entrance of a United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan base in Malakal, Feb. 6, 2014.
Internally displaced people carry water from outside as they walk toward the entrance of a United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan base in Malakal, Feb. 6, 2014.
Insecurity in South Sudan along with obstructions to aid delivery and a huge funding shortfall will result in a massive tragedy in the coming months in the young country, where millions face hunger as the conflict drags on, U.N. officials warned Tuesday.

“Ordinary people are bearing the brunt of this conflict and agencies like ours are facing far too many obstacles in trying to assist them," said World Food Program (WFP) chief Ertharin Cousin at the end of a two-day visit to South Sudan with the head of the U.N. refugee agency, Antonio Guterres.

During their trip, the two U.N. agency heads met with people who fled their homes during the conflict and have sought shelter in the remote town of Nyal, in Unity state. 

“Women we met in Nyal who have been affected by the conflict asked us to convey three messages to the world: they need peace, assistance to relieve their suffering, and the chance for their children to return to school,” Cousin said.
A child is given an oral cholera vaccine dose at the UNMISS Tomping camp in Juba, where tens of thousands of South Sudanese are living in makeshift shelters.A child is given an oral cholera vaccine dose at the UNMISS Tomping camp in Juba, where tens of thousands of South Sudanese are living in makeshift shelters.
x
A child is given an oral cholera vaccine dose at the UNMISS Tomping camp in Juba, where tens of thousands of South Sudanese are living in makeshift shelters.
A child is given an oral cholera vaccine dose at the UNMISS Tomping camp in Juba, where tens of thousands of South Sudanese are living in makeshift shelters.


The two agency chiefs discussed the crisis with President Salva Kiir and other government officials and were given the president's commitment that South Sudan will support the delivery of humanitarian assistance in the country.

More than one million people have been forced by the fighting in South Sudan to flee their homes, according to the United Nations. Some 254,600 of them fled to neighboring countries, and more than 803,000 are thought to be displaced inside South Sudan.

At least 10,000 people are thought to have died, although no precise death toll is available.

The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a report released Tuesday that 3.7 million people are at high risk of food insecurity in South Sudan as the heavily agriculture dependent country's planting season continues to be disrupted by ongoing clashes and insecurity.

The planting season started in mid-March and runs until mid-June, OCHA said.
If it continues...the level of suffering will likely be unprecedented.


Another problem facing South Sudan is a severe funding shortfall.

OCHA said in a statement that a six-month crisis response plan for South Sudan that was launched in January has only been 30 percent funded and faces a shortfall of $887 million.

WFP said it faces a funding shortfall of $224 million in South Sudan over the next six months.

 
Toby Lanzer, the U.N.'s humanitarian coordinator for South Sudan, urged donors to make funds available without delay. He called on opposition and government forces to end the fighting in South Sudan so that humanitarian aid can get through to those in need.
 
“If donor funding is not made available now, we will be unable to meet the most basic needs to keep people alive or prevent a catastrophic decline in food security for millions of people at risk later in the year,” Lanzer said, warning that, without peace and help now, "an even greater tragedy" is likely to unfold in South Sudan next year.

Vincent Lelei, the head of OCHA in South Sudan, said insufficient funding for South Sudan will likely result in "unprecedented" suffering in the country.

"Those who don't have food will be going without food... Others will suffer from diseases. Children will be malnourished," he said.

"And in fact if it continues... and they continue to weaken from movements from here and there, the level of suffering will likely be unprecedented," Lelei told VOA.


 
The interview with Vincent Lelei was conducted by Mugume Davis Rwakaringi in Juba. 
 

 

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More