The overall picture presented by callers to Radio Ergo’s feedback platform this week (21-27 July 2022) is one of still worsening drought and water shortage across many parts of the country, with associated impact on lives and livelihoods. There were many calls from Somaliland, especially Togdher, and an increase in calls from Mudug against recent weeks. Shabelle regions and Bay were also more prominent. Several reported failed water points. Rises of prices of water, food, and fuel were a major concern among callers across the regions. There were also complaints about the lack of aid and response by authorities and aid agencies. The following summarises the calls by theme.
Drought and water shortage – among the many callers from Togdher, a caller in Awdanle said their boreholes were not working, their livestock were sick, and their livelihoods were threatened. Several in Buhodle and Burao called for help in overcoming the prolonged drought. Callers in Qoryalle said the rain had failed and the drought was intense. Another Togdher caller said the situation was worsening. In Sanag, a female caller in Garadag said the drought was severe and widespread and the government should help them. A caller in the border town of Haylan said water sources were depleted and both Somaliland and Puntland administrations had neglected them. A caller in Sool region said their livestock had no fodder, and their children were malnourished due to the drought. In Mudug, a female caller in Galkayo said the drought was becoming intense, and instead of awaiting aid agencies people should pray for rain. Callers in Harhar said the drought had led to the death of livestock and displacement. One said conflict was also exacerbating conditions. A caller in Jariban appealed for water and fodder saying they feared losing all their animals. In Galgadud, callers in Abudwak wanted their voices raised by Radio Ergo to get help from the government. One said their goats and camels were dying, another said that families were suffering. In Adado a caller said the water catchments were empty and they had no generators to access any water from boreholes. Other callers from Dusamareb, Do’oley, Bahdo, Balanbale, and Kahandale all asked for aid intervention due to the hardships of the drought and lack of water. In Bay region in the south, a female caller in Baidoa said food prices had risen sharply and they could not sell off their livestock for cash. A female caller in Daynunay said aid agencies had not met their promise to assist them after their farms had failed. In Middle Shabelle, a farmer in Raaga-Elle said the wells had broken so they could not irrigate their farms. In Lower Shabelle, a caller in Tortorow said they had no wells in their area and a tank of water was costing 50,000 shillings. A caller in Wanleweyn said the government should intervene before people died due to the worsening conditions. A caller in an unspecified Somalia border area said whilst they had rain, people were suffering on the Ethiopian side and needed help as they planned to migrate.
Cost of living – callers from across the regions complained about rising prices and the inability to buy basic needs. Callers in Hargeisa and Togdher spoke of high inflation. A caller in Bosaso said food, fuel and other items had gone up and were hard to afford. A caller in M. Shabelle said although they had rain, they could not sell their thin livestock and were dealing with soaring food prices. A female caller in Jubaland said the inflation was unbearable and the government needed to step in to reduce prices. A female caller in Bardera, Gedo, said prices were high and it was hard to afford anything.
IDPs/PLWD – a caller in Dusamareb, saying he was a widowed father of nine children and disabled, wanted to receive support from the national ‘Bahnano’ fund again, which had stopped. A caller in Dollow said they were IDPs in Kabasa camp who had lost their livelihoods and were not receiving any aid as conditions worsened.
COVID19 – this topic continued to attract callers, some of whom had questions for the Radio Doctor. A female caller in Garowe said they were still worried about the disease. A caller in 18-May IDP camp in Togdher said they had taken the vaccine and urged others to do the same.