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UNICEF DRC Humanitarian Situation Report No. 2: March and April 2022

Countries
DR Congo
Sources
UNICEF
Publication date
Origin
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Highlights

  • Since April 11, the country has experienced the 14th Ebola virus outbreak in the province of Equateur, the third outbreak in 5 years (2018 – 2022). The accumulation to date reports three positive cases (1 female, 2 male) and 100% death.

  • The upsurge of measles epidemic remains a concern with 6,638 cases including 128 deaths reported in Tanganyika and 3,019 cases, including 28 deaths, reported in South Kivu.

  • Vaccination campaigns against COVID-19 were rolled-out in four provinces (Maniema, Kwilu, Kasaï and Kinshasa 13 HZ) where 346,050 people were vaccinated during the months of March and April 2022. At the national level 2.33% of the population has received the first dose of the vaccine and 1.48 are fully vaccinated with best performances in Kasaï Oriental (6.9%), Kasai (3,9%), Haut Uélé (2,8%), Kwilu (2,5%) and Sud Ubangi (2.5%).

Situation in Numbers

15,800,000 children in need of humanitarian assistance (OCHA, Revised HRP 2022)

27,000,000 people in need (OCHA, Revised HRP 2022)

5,700,000 IDPs (Revised HRP 2022)

3,518 cases of cholera reported since January (Ministry of Health)

Funding Overview and Partnerships

UNICEF appeals for US$ 356 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 2022 HAC has a funding gap of 82 per cent, with significant funding needs in nutrition, health, WASH, education, and communication for development.

Situation Overview & Humanitarian Need

Population Displacement:

Persistent and intensified insecurity in several parts of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) continued to affect civilians. The first round of peace talks between the DRC government and armed groups operating in the east took place in Nairobi from April 23 to April 27, 2022, with the goal of putting an end to armed violence. During the talks, President Felix Tshisekedi urged the armed groups to accept demobilization and begin reintegration to restore peace, security, and stability in the country.

In the North Kivu province, humanitarian crisis worsened following clashes between Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (FARDC) and Non-State Armed Groups (NSAG) in Rutshuru territory where 55,000 civilians had sought safety in the health zones of Rutshuru and Rwanguba and 10,000 people had crossed the border into Uganda. In Ituri, repeated attacks by various armed groups and FARDC military operations, particularly in Irumu, Djugu and Mahagi territories, have resulted in 165,000 Internally Displaced persons (IDP) in Komanda, Lolwa and Mambasa zones; 10,000 in Aungba and 10,000 in Linga. Response to the humanitarian needs remained challenging due to multiple displacements and increasing access constraints due to frequent attacks on roads.

In the South Kivu province, the territory of Fizi and Uvira remained the main centre of the humanitarian crisis as clashes between armed groups were repeatedly reported. Displacement of around 19,000 people were registered during the reporting period. In the northern part of Tanganyika, intercommunal conflicts continued to force people to flee their homes seeking safety, protection, and assistance.

Epidemic:

Since April 11, the country has experienced the 14th Ebola virus outbreak in the province of Equateur, the third outbreak in 5 years (2018 – 2022). The accumulation to date reports three positive cases (1 female, 2 male) and 100% death. The current outbreak is unrelated to the other two EVD outbreaks experienced in the province of Equateur. The DRC also continued to face several other epidemics (measles, Cholera, Covid-19, polio, etc.). The measles situation became increasingly serious. At week 17 of 2022, the cumulative number of suspected measles cases already reached 85% of notified cases for the whole of 2021 (55,771 suspected cases and 783 deaths: i.e., a lethality of 1.4% with 106 health zones. A total of 1,242 COVID-19 cases including 3 deaths (0.24 per cent case-fatality rate) were also reported. Polio outbreak was ongoing in Maniema, North and South Kivu, where 25 cases of vaccine derived polio virus type two (cVDPV2) were reported.

Protection:

Children and women continue to be at heightened risk (gender-based violence and in particular sexual violence) in conflict affected areas. As of March 2022, the State of Siege was renewed by the President of DRC in these two provinces for the second time since May 2021. Of particular concern remains the increase of killing and maiming of children, particularly in Ituri. Children in North Kivu, Ituri, Tanganyika and South Kivu continue to be particularly at risk of recruitment and abduction. Ongoing military operations and attacks against IPDs sites further increase risks for civilian population and particularly children.

Nutrition:

The key factors influencing the nutritional situation remained food insecurity, epidemics, and population movements. UNICEF continued efforts to increase response capacity with partners in five provinces (Tanganyika, Kwilu, Kasai, Kasai Central). SMART nutrition surveys were conducted in six health zones of Lusambo, Kayamba, Kabalo, Nyunzu, Kongolo and Mbulula respectively in the provinces of Sankuru, Haut Lomami and Tanganyika. The results indicated high rates of Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) in the health zones of Lusambo (SAM: 4.3 per cent, Global Acute Malnutrition (GAM): 13.6 per cent) and Kayamba (SAM: 4.4 per cent, GAM: 13,0 per cent).