Lake Chad Complex Emergency Fact Sheet #25 FY2017

September 21, 2017

  • USAID Administrator Mark Green announces nearly $54 million in additional FY 2017 funding to support relief operations for Nigerian people in conflict-affected areas.
  • Cholera transmission continues in Borno, with health actors recording more than 3,100 suspected and confirmed cases, including 53 related deaths.
  • Numerous violent attacks targeting civilians in the Lake Chad Basin result in additional casualties and displacement in September

Numbers At A Glance

8.5 million

Population Requiring Humanitarian Assistance in Nigeria’s Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe States

1.6 million

IDPs in Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe

127,299

IDPs in Niger’s Diffa Region

235,913

IDPs in Cameroon’s Far North Region

118,804

IDPs in Chad’s Lac Region

204,696

Nigerian Refugees in Cameroon, Chad, and Niger

Humanitarian Funding

For the Lake Chad Basin Response

USAID/OFDA 175,552,241
USAID/FFP $387,657,958
State/PRM $114,062,524
USAID Nigeria $17,036,443
Total $694,309,166

During the September 18–22 UN General Assembly in New York, USAID Administrator Green announced nearly $54 million in additional FY 2017 funding for the humanitarian response in Nigeria, including nearly $28.9 million in USAID/OFDA funding, more than $22.7 million in USAID/FFP funding, and $2.4 million in State/PRM funding. The funding announcement brings the total U.S. Government funding for humanitarian activities supporting Nigerian households in the Lake Chad region to nearly $402.7 million to date in FY 2017. The new funding included more than $11.8 million for health and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) interventions in northeastern Nigeria, including in cholera-affected areas of Borno State.

As of September 20, Borno State Ministry of Health (SMoH) authorities had recorded more than 3,100 suspected and confirmed cholera cases, including 53 related deaths, since mid-August. National and international relief actors continue to scale up health and WASH assistance in Borno’s four affected local government areas (LGAs)—Dikwa, Jere, Maiduguri Metropolitan Council (MMC), and Monguno—and recently launched a cholera vaccination campaign aiming to reach more than 900,000 individuals.

Attacks against civilians continue to heighten insecurity in the Lake Chad Basin, the UN reports. A mid-September attack at an aid distribution point in Borno’s Konduga LGA resulted in at least 15 civilian deaths and more than 40 injured persons. Meanwhile, armed opposition groups continue to attack vulnerable populations, particularly those residing in unprotected border areas or villages, in Cameroon’s Far North Region, Chad’s Lac Region, and Niger’s Diffa Region.

The UN recorded nearly 30 incidents of violence against civilians in the Lake Chad Basin in August, representing the highest monthly figure reported since January 2016. In Nigeria, two unidentified adult females carrying person-borne improved explosive devices (PBIEDs) detonated the weapons during an aid distribution in Konduga’s Mashalari village on September 18, resulting in at least 15 deaths and more than 40 injured persons, local media report. In Niger, militant attacks recently increased near the Chadian border following the withdrawal of Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) troops from the area. In Chad’s Lac Region, armed groups continue to attack villages, limiting humanitarian access and jeopardizing the protection of civilians.

Despite some returns to areas of origin in the Lake Chad Basin, armed attacks and renewed military operations have increased population displacement, particularly cross-border displacement, in recent months, according to the UN. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported that conflict had displaced more than 235,000 Nigerian internally displaced persons (IDPs) to Cameroon’s Far North as of August 31. In addition, the UN also reports that an increased number of security incidents has resulted in new displacements in Cameroon and rendered additional areas inaccessible for humanitarian actors.

Relief actors have expressed concerns regarding the increasing trend of forced recruitment and exploitation of children by armed opposition groups in the Lake Chad Basin, the UN reports. Additionally, children who escaped or were released from captivity continue to face suspicion, stigmatization, or rejection across communities in the region. In northeastern Nigeria, armed actors forcibly recruited more than 80 children to execute PBIED attacks between January 1 and September 18—representing a fourfold increase in PBIED attacks by children compared to the total recorded in 2016, according to the UN. In addition, the number of attacks targeting civilian locations, including sites for IDPs, has increased in Cameroon and Nigeria in recent months, prompting some relief agencies to temporarily suspend activities at some locations in August.

USAID partner the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and other relief actors provided psychosocial support services and other critical protection services to more than 20,400 women and children in Nigeria, including nearly 17,400 children, in Adawama, Borno, and Yobe states, from July 15–31. State/PRM recently contributed an additional $2.4 million to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to provide multi-sector support and protection services to vulnerable Nigerian populations.

Between August 16 and September 20, SMoH officials recorded more than 3,100 suspected and confirmed cholera cases, including 53 related deaths, in Borno. As of September 20, SMoH authorities had reported a nearly 1.7 percent case fatality rate, exceeding the UN World Health Organization (WHO) emergency threshold for cholera of 1 percent. To date, the outbreak has affected populations in Dikwa, Jere, MMC, and Monguno. SMoH officials recorded more than 1,600 cholera cases, or 52 percent of the total, in Jere/MMC’s Muna Corridor, with Dikwa and Monguno hosting the remaining 20 percent and 28 percent of cases, respectively. Children ages nine years and younger constituted nearly 54 percent of cases as of September 18, suggesting a need for increased hygiene promotion activities tailored toward young children, according to the SMoH.

As of mid-September, health actors had established five cholera treatment centers and 12 oral rehydration points across cholera-affected areas. WASH actors, including USAID/OFDA partners, continue to support thousands of vulnerable IDP and host community households in Borno with cholera prevention activities, including hygiene promotion, latrine maintenance, and water chlorination support. The SMoH reports that non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and UN agencies had provided WASH services to more than 27,500 people in Dikwa, Jere, MMC, and Monguno as of September 20. In addition, health actors recently commenced a cholera vaccination campaign—deploying more than 915,000 doses of WHO-provided oral cholera vaccines—and had vaccinated more than 561,600 people in Dikwa, Jere, Konduga, MMC, and Monguno as of September 20.

Between December 2015 and September 2017, USAID/OFDA partner IOM biometrically registered more than 1 million crisis-affected people in northeast Nigeria, better facilitating the efficient and precise delivery of humanitarian assistance. The collection of household-level data—provided voluntarily by conflict-affected households—allows relief actors to identify the location and needs of individuals and use the data to address priority humanitarian concerns, including through targeted mobile-money transfers provided by USAID/FFP partner the UN World Food Program (WFP). USAID/OFDA recently provided an additional $5 million to IOM to support health, humanitarian coordination and information management, logistics support and relief commodities, shelter and settlements, and WASH activities in northeastern Nigeria.

In August, a USAID/FFP partner reached more than 105,000 individuals in Borno and Yobe with cash-based transfers for the purchase of food. The partner also screened nearly 2,700 children ages five years and younger for malnutrition in Borno and Yobe and observed high levels of malnutrition across the two states. The partner referred more than 500 malnourished patients to health facilities for therapeutic services, while more than 3,000 caregivers of malnourished patients received counseling on appropriate feeding practices. Another USAID/FFP partner conducted malnutrition screenings for 4,200 children ages five years and younger in Borno and also found high levels of malnutrition in the state. The partner also reached more than 5,800 people in Borno with cash-based transfers for the purchase of food in August. USAID partners in Borno coordinate malnutrition screening activities, as well as other nutrition interventions, through the Nutrition in Emergency Working Group—the coordinating body for nutrition activities in Nigeria, comprising UN agencies, NGOs, and other stakeholders.

USAID/FFP recently announced more than $22.7 million in additional FY 2017 funding to support NGO partners in delivering emergency food assistance to vulnerable populations in Nigeria. In addition, USAID/OFDA recently contributed more than $5.7 million to partner NGOs, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and WFP to improve agricultural production and reduce food insecurity, as well as provide humanitarian coordination and logistics support to distribute relief commodities in northeastern Nigeria.

From July 15–31, UNICEF admitted nearly 18,200 children ages five years and younger for treatment of severe acute malnutrition (SAM) in Borno and Yobe, bringing the total number of children UNICEF admitted for treatment of SAM to approximately 84,800 cases in 2017. UNICEF also distributed more than 14,600 cartons of ready-to-use therapeutic food—sufficient to treat nearly 17,000 SAM patients—to 144 community-based management of acute malnutrition sites in northeastern Nigeria. USAID/OFDA recently contributed an additional $1.4 million to UNICEF to support health interventions for vulnerable populations in northeastern Nigeria and provided more than $1.4 million to partner NGOs to provide additional nutrition assistance to Nigerian households in affected areas.

During the same period, UNICEF conducted more than 208,900 consultations at health facilities in IDP camps and host communities in Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe, with health officials identifying malaria as the most commonly treated condition. UNICEF immunized nearly 68,000 children and pregnant women for various diseases, including measles immunizations for nearly 4,800 children ages six months to 15 years, and provided vitamin A supplements to nearly 12,900 children and deworming tablets to more than 15,400 children. UNICEF also reached nearly 14,900 women with antenatal and postnatal care services and supported more than 1,300 safe births. In addition, UNICEF distributed more than 25,800 long-lasting insecticide treated nets to 12,900 households in Borno and Yobe, reaching approximately 64,500 people with the malaria-prevention supplies.

In Cameroon’s Far North, security analysts reported an increase in security incidents and attacks, as well as a geographical shift in the location of recent incidents—from Logone-et-Chari Department to Mayo-Sava Department—when compared to 2016, according to the UN. In addition, a recent attack in Mayo-Tsanaga Department prompted the displacement of approximately 700 people and resulted in four deaths and numerous abductions, the destruction of houses and a church, and looting of household materials. Since January, more than 40 PBIED attacks have occurred in Far North Region, primarily in Mayo-Sava, the UN reports.

In cooperation with the Government of the Republic of Cameroon military, local authorities in Mayo-Sava’s Kolofata District began relocating more than 16,000 IDPs in Kolofata town to a resettlement site on the outskirts of the town on July 15, the UN reports. The majority of the IDPs had been sheltering in public buildings, such as schools, for more than two years. In response, a multi-sectoral mission visited the site on August 4 to identify priority needs among the population. The assessment found that food was the most immediate need for IDPs, with displaced households also identifying access to shelter, WASH, and other relief services as critical gaps. In response, humanitarian actors distributed food and other relief items, such as blankets, mosquito nets, and tarps, and developed a six-month response plan, including sustainable actions to provide adequate water and sanitation to the relocated IDPs.

Between January and June, UNICEF admitted more than 29,600 children ages five years and younger experiencing SAM for treatment in Cameroon, including nearly 20,200 children in Far North. UNICEF also rehabilitated 25 boreholes in Logone-et-Chari to provide access to safe drinking water for approximately 5,500 people in August. Through the construction of more than 870 latrines equipped with handwashing materials, UNICEF provided access to improved sanitation services for approximately 3,500 people in Mayo-Tsanaga and Logone-et-Chari, bringing the total beneficiaries with access to adequate sanitation to more than 42,200 people in 2017.

Recent protection-monitoring reports highlighted an increasing trend of protection incidents in Chad, with more than 230 cases reported in August compared to approximately 210 and 190 cases in July and June, respectively, according to the UN. In particular, the UN reported an increase of nearly 20 percent in gender-based violence cases in July compared to the approximately 150 cases reported in June. USAID/OFDA NGO partners are creating child-friendly spaces and mobilizing community volunteers in IDP camps to train youth on life skills, refer children requiring psychological care to facilities, organize community resiliency events, and identify and mitigate protection risks in their communities. In addition, State/PRM partners the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and UNICEF are providing multisector assistance, including health, protection, shelter, and WASH services, to vulnerable populations in Chad.

As of mid-September, heavy rains and flooding during Niger’s June-to-September rainy season had resulted in at least 56 deaths, affected approximately 195,000 people, and destroyed more than 11,300 houses and 31,100 acres of land in all eight regions of Niger, according to Government of Niger authorities. In addition, the seasonal flooding resulted in more than 16,000 livestock lost between June and September 23. Flooding has affected more than 9,300 people—nearly 5 percent of the country’s total affected population—in Niger’s Diffa and Zinder regions, which border northeastern Nigeria, local officials report.

Following escalated violence in northeastern Nigeria, the Government of Nigeria declared a state of emergency in Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe in May 2013. Between 2013 and 2015, Boko Haram attacks generated significant displacement within Nigeria and eventually to the surrounding countries of Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. As Boko Haram expanded its reach in Nigeria, controlling territory and launching attacks in neighboring countries, the scale of displacement continued to increase, and deteriorations in markets and loss of livelihoods exacerbated conflict-related food insecurity.

By early 2016, advances by the Nigerian military and the MNJTF—comprising forces from Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria—had recovered large swathes of territory from Boko Haram in Nigeria, revealing acute food insecurity and malnutrition in newly accessible areas. Insecurity, including attacks by Boko Haram and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria–West Africa, continues to restrict access to basic services, and both displaced people and vulnerable host communities are in need of emergency food assistance, safe drinking water, and relief commodities, as well as health, nutrition, protection, shelter, and WASH interventions.

In October and November 2016, U.S. Ambassador Michael S. Hoza, U.S. Ambassador Geeta Pasi, U.S. Ambassador Eunice S. Reddick, and U.S. Chargé d’Affaires, a.i., David J. Young, redeclared disasters for the complex emergencies in Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria, respectively.

On November 10, 2016, USAID activated a Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) to lead the USG response to the humanitarian crisis in northeastern Nigeria. USAID also stood up a Washington, D.C.-based Response Management Team to support the DART.

Last updated: September 22, 2017

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