The humanitarian community continued to mourn the deaths of Saifura Hussaini Ahmed Khorsa and Hauwa Mohammed Liman, midwives with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). Both aid workers were abducted from Rann town, Borno State, on 1 March 2018 following a deadly attack by a Non-State Armed Group in which three aid workers were killed, and two were executed in September and October 2018 respectively. A nurse with UNICEF, also abducted from Rann on 1 March 2018, is still being held by the Non-State Armed Group.
November marked a significant increase in insecurity and hostilities, especially in northern Borno State, with serious implications on humanitarian operations and the civilian population. In November, humanitarian partners temporarily suspended operations in areas north of Monguno, while others significantly decreased programming in Damasak due to ongoing insecurity. This scale down and temporary suspension of activities has left tens of thousands of people without adequate access to humanitarian assistance and medical care. The ongoing conflict has also led to lengthy delays, impeding the movement of humanitarian cargo along Damboa road. Regular engagement with the Nigerian Armed Forces to de-conflict movements and humanitarian activities are ongoing. As of mid-November, humanitarian cargo trucks are able to access Rann after several months of being cut off during the rainy season.
The Nigerian Humanitarian Fund – Private Sector Initiative (NHF-PSI) was launched on 15 November in Lagos, marking the first time that the private sector is collaborating with the United Nations through a country-based fund that pools resources to deliver humanitarian aid to people in need. Fourteen companies and groups announced their support for the initiative at the launch, and will join to form a Steering Group that will raise awareness and resources, while promoting innovative solutions, to support humanitarian action in the north-east.
The humanitarian community is also preparing for upcoming elections next year. The Inter-Sector Working Group initiated an election contingency plan, working closely with sectors to develop evidence-based scenarios for direct and indirect consequences of violence and displacement in identified hotspot locations in the north-east. The plan is underpinned by the humanitarian imperative to reach the most vulnerable people in need of life-saving assistance, following analysis by humanitarian partners.
Partners launched the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign under the localized theme “Breaking the Silence to End to Gender-based Violence”. A series of activities are ongoing to raise awareness amongst communities and leaders on GBV/SEA principles across Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.
Cholera cases are now under control and on decline as a result of timely and robust humanitarian response. Reported cases of cholera in both Adamawa and Yobe states have dropped to zero.
The 2019 Humanitarian Program Cycle (HPC) is ongoing underpinned by a three-year response strategy and one-year response plan for 2019, which is scheduled to be launched early 2019.
In 2018, the United Nations and partners appealed for $1.05 billion for 176 projects to reach 6.1 million people in dire need of life-saving aid in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states. It is the sixth largest single-country appeal globally to be implemented by 60 humanitarian organisations in 2018. As of 30 November, $684.7 million (65 per cent) of the funds have been received, according to the Financial Tracking Service (FTS).