An estimated 900,000 individuals have been affected by flooding since June across South Sudan. WFP is targeting flood-affected people in need of food assistance. More than 572,000 people were reached with assistance in September.
The UK Minister for Africa and the Special Envoy for Famine Prevention and Humanitarian Affairs visited food assistance and nutrition operations in flood-affected Bor and Pibor.
WFP strongly condemns the actions that led to the attack on humanitarian infrastructure and personnel in Renk which jeopardizes both aid and development for the communities of Northern Upper Nile.
WFP is concerned by the escalating tensions with the Renk Youth Association that have resulted in the suspension of life-saving assistance in Renk County, Upper Nile State. WFP strongly condemns the actions that led to the burning down of a Medair warehouse in Renk and the threats and intimidation against humanitarian workers. The current circumstances are not conducive to the delivery of aid and have already impacted the ability of thousands of the most vulnerable to access key services. Furthermore, this risks the large-scale economic opportunities that aid supports in Renk.
In South Sudan, violence continues to pose the greatest risk to food security. Most of the areas affected by conflict are in Emergency (IPC Phase 4) acute food insecurity. Since 2015, there has been at least 31 pockets of famine conditions related to conflict. Violence, even when subsides, has a long term impact, which is crippling the food security and livelihoods of growing numbers of people.
Economic shocks and high food prices make a fragile situation worse. The abrupt depreciation of the South Sudanese Pound (SSP) in mid-October contributed to an above average increase in food prices across markets. In Juba, prices of white wheat bread (10 pieces) sharply increased overnight, on October 14, from SSP 300 to SSP 500, representing a 66 percent increase. Despite the Government of South Sudan’s efforts to enforce price reductions, traders have maintained their selling prices at the elevated level, especially for wheat flour, sugar and vegetable oil.
On 21 October, the UK Minister for Africa, James Duddridge, and the Special Envoy for Famine Prevention and Humanitarian Affairs, Nick Dyer, visited food assistance and nutrition operations in Bor and Pibor with WFP Country Director Matthew Hollingworth. The UK delegation were able to see the devastation caused by conflict and flooding, as well as the vital humanitarian support provided through UK aid in South Sudan. At the nutrition centre, the visitors were briefed that screening, at this centre, showed Global Acute Malnutrition (GAM) rates above 30 percent; 60 percent of children arriving at the centre have malaria; and there is an ongoing measles outbreak in the Greater Pibor Administrative Area.
WFP is grateful to the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office for their contribution of USD 3.5 million and to the Government of Sweden for their contribution of USD 3.75 million supporting WFP’s life saving assistance. WFP is grateful to the European Commission for their USD 7 million contribution to WFP’s resilience activities. WFP faces a USD 544 million shortfall to continue assistance for the next six months.