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UNICEF Democratic Republic of the Congo Humanitarian Situation Report No. 7 for July 2021

Countries
DR Congo
Sources
UNICEF
Publication date

Highlights

• The humanitarian situation in Ituri, North Kivu, South Kivu and Tanganyika remains critical with intensification of conflicts and violences in some territories leading to massive population movements and increase of violations notably against children.

• 101 Health Zones (HZs) are on alert for Severe Acute Malnutrition, the highest percentage (19%) since 2010.

• As of July, 78,871 people were vaccinated against COVID-19, including 2,513 in the second dose (AZ vaccine). Since July 10, here is, unfortunately, a suspension of vaccination due to lack of vaccines.

• 2,471 measles cases were reported in July, while Tshopo province remains a hotspot for meningitis epidemic, with at least 73 deaths in July.

• As of July 31, 2021, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has reported a total of 4,155 cholera cases, with 92 deaths, this level of incidence represents a decrease of 90% compared to 2020.

Situation in Numbers

9,800,000 children in need of humanitarian assistance (OCHA, Revised HRP 2021*)

19,600,000 people in need (OCHA, Revised HRP 2021*)

5,300,000 IDPs (Revised HRP 2021*)

4,155 cases of cholera reported since January (Ministry of Health)

Funding Overview and Partnerships

UNICEF appeals for US$ 384 million to sustain the provision of humanitarian services for women and children in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). UNICEF expresses its sincere gratitude to all public and private donors for the contributions received to date. However, the 2021 HAC has a funding gap of 81%, with significant funding needs in nutrition, health, WASH, education, and communication for development.

Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs

The humanitarian situation remains very fragile particularly in the eastern provinces of the country: Ituri, North Kivu, South Kivu and Tanganyika. The situation in the northern North Kivu (petit Nord Kivu) and the south Ituri provinces remains of particular concern with current intensification of operations against non-state armed groups generating important population movements and affecting notably the protection of children. The recruitment of children, the lack of access to affected areas by humanitarian actors due to the volatile security situation and possibly an increased use of IEDs are some of the key concerns reported. In the territory of Djugu in northern Ituri province, the military operations also increased in the Mahagi and Djugu territories. New population displacements were recorded in the Bambu and Nizi health zones in Djugu.

In Tanganyika province, conflicts between fractions of armed groups and militias at the border of Tanganyika-Maniema and South Kivu continue to affect stability of Tanganyika. Nyunzu and Kalemie territories remain hotspots with on-going armed conflict, while tensions between the community Twa and Bantu are still ongoing. In addition to the pressing needs in terms of protection of the population, the newly displaced people continued to face difficulties in access to health care, water and sanitation shelter, and food.
Recurrent natural disasters, floods, and increasing Lake Tanganyika waters continue to wreak havoc on Tanganyika, destroying dwellings, essential utilities, and over 5,000 hectares of cultivated land. Besides, the heavy flooding resulted in the complete or partial destruction of 264 schools in four of the five territories in Ituri province.

Regarding the epidemics, meningitis, measles, cholera and plague are of particular concern as of July. A suspected bacterial meningitis epidemic was reported in the health zone of Banalia, Tshopo province, with at least 73 deaths reported between July 11 and 19 July 2021. Despite vaccination effort, the number of measles cases reported is increasing with 2,471 cases of measles recorded in July. As of 31 July 2021, the DRC has reported 4,155 cholera cases, with 92 deaths representing a 90% decrease compared to 2020 figures. However, the case fatality rate increased from 1.3% to 2.7% between 2020 and 2021. 34 cases have been notified in the health zones of Kalemie and Nyemba in the Tanganyika. Plague is still on-going in northern Ituri with one new case reported in Fataki Health Zone this month.

A significant increase in the number of COVID-19 positive cases has been recorded since June. As of 31 July 2021, there are 52,292 confirmed cases and 1,050 deaths. 81,984 people have been vaccinated, but the vaccination process had to be stopped due to a shortage of vaccines. In response to the recent increase in the number of cases of COVID19, the Government and the provincial authorities have put in place mitigation measures such as curfew and limitations of the transportation conditions in the cities and provinces where there are more than 20 declared COVID-19 positive cases (mainly Kinshasa, Haut-Katanga, Lualaba and Kivus). This measures are still in place in July.