The calls to Radio Ergo’s independent feedback platform this week (13-18 January 2022) continued to reflect the gravity and complexity of the ongoing drought affecting Somali communities across different regions. The largest number of calls were about combinations of drought-related issues, including lack of water; lack of fodder and death of livestock; shortage of food; failure of farms; migration in search of basic needs; conflict over resources; lack of services and water infrastructure; disease among people and livestock; and the need for aid. The following summarises the calls by theme.
Water shortage and drought: calls on this topic from Somaliland came from Awdal, Marodi Jeh, Togdher, Sanag and Sool, among other locations. Most callers were worried about the prolongation of the drought and the lack of livestock fodder. Callers in Ainabo said water catchments were drying up and people had migrated there from other areas. A caller in Hingalol, Sanag, said they were losing goats and camels. Another in Sanag said they had migrated to an area where people would not share the resources and their goats had to wait all day to get water. Another called for water and food aid. In Puntland, one caller in Garowe said 14 goats had died in a single morning in Saah-megaag near Boame. Another caller in an unidentified part of Puntland said their watermelon and onion crops had failed, the trees were eaten by termites, and the drought had caused displacement. In various parts of Mudug callers said livestock had died, there was no rainfall, and they needed water and food aid. Callers from across Galgadud called for aid describing lack of water and fodder and continuing drought. A female caller in Bahdo, Galgadud, said they had water but lacked food. Further south in Middle Shabelle, farmers in Lafole said the river water was turning bad and their farms were failing. In Balad, farmers asked for support to get generators as people were charging high fees to rent out water pumps. There were several calls from Bay, including one from a disabled man saying the drought made it harder for him to move about. A caller in Kismayo said their cows had died. Several callers in Gedo said the drought had gone on for a year and a half and they needed help.
IDPs – two callers in Bardera, Gedo, said there were thousands of people displaced from various places now living in camps and needing food aid and assistance from local businesses and aid agencies.
Health and services – a caller in Buloburte, Hiran, said there was a measles outbreak affecting families and the area lacked medicines. A female caller in Shilamadow, Galgadud, said they lacked health and other services and the nearest clinic was 15 kilometres away. She also said they had no school. Another female caller in Dalsan, Galgadud, asked for education services in her area where she said there were no schools, and they also had water shortage.
Locusts – there were a few calls from parts of Somaliland about locusts. A farmer in El-Gardi said locusts had eaten their crops and the water had turned sour in the wells. Another farmer in Sanag urged people to cover their crops, saying that they had successfully protected their crops from locusts last year and had managed to harvest their produce.
COVID19 – there were calls from various regions indicating cases of the disease, with some callers asking for advice or information about symptoms, treatment, and vaccines.