The Horn of Africa is struggling with a historic drought that threatens the lives of millions of people.
More funding is urgently needed for both emergency relief and long-term solutions.
Finland has also increased its support for the region.
Huge amounts of humanitarian assistance are currently needed in the Horn of Africa.
It was the main message that Gemma Connell, Head of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Regional Office for Eastern and Southern Africa, had for her Finnish audience on 4 October.
Connell was speaking at a briefing organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from Nairobi, Kenya, through a remote connection.
Three countries in the Horn of Africa - Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya - are suffering from a historic drought that is affecting the lives of more than 36 million people.
As many as 21 million people already face acute hunger, according to Connell.
Climate scientists and village elders say the drought is the worst in four decades.
“The drought has already lasted two whole years.
The village elders had never seen such a severe and prolonged drought in their lives,” says Connell.
Not only has the rainy season failed twice a year, but temperatures have also been exceptionally high.
A similar combination of drought and high temperatures was seen in 2011 and 1984, when the Horn of Africa was hit by famine.
"It's the horror we're facing right now," says Connell.
Disease, violence and child marriage Hunger is rarely the cause of death during famine.
“Most people die of diseases.
We are already seeing an increase in cases of cholera and measles,” says Connell.
Every crisis exacerbates violence against women.
There is more intimate partner violence and the drought forces women to collect water from distances two to three times longer than normal, exposing them to a greater risk of sexual violence.
Child marriages also appear to be on the rise.
"There's no data yet, but we hear the same story in every school and town we visit," says Connell.
For many families, having a young married girl may be their last resort for survival.
The family earns a modest additional income from the dowry and has one less mouth to feed.
"Somalia is the face of climate change" The food crisis is exacerbated by inflation as a result of the war in Ukraine and by conflicts in the region that prevent aid from reaching its destination.
However, the worst factor is climate change.
Connell and Ridley emphasize that the crisis is caused by climate change and that the people who suffer from it bear the least blame for climate change.
In Somalia alone, climate-related extreme weather events have tripled in the last 30 years.
“It makes life more and more difficult,” says Ridley.
"Somalis are the human face of climate change."
OCHA is now trying to get climate funds to help mitigate the hunger crisis.
“The Green Climate Fund, for example, now amounts to more than USD 40 billion, of which USD 2.8 million has already been used, and USD 10 billion is earmarked for different purposes,” he says.
“There are still billions of dollars left.
And there are also other funds that need to be opened up and used to help these people who are trapped by climate change.” An important opportunity to exert influence is the COP27 Climate Change Conference in Cairo in November, and OCHA will promote this issue there.
"I don't think we can prevent future crises, but we can mitigate their effects," says Gemma Connell.
The next drought is likely to come before the region has recovered from it.
Connell says there are ways to prepare.
Land and soil use could be improved, and many are already doing so, but there is not enough funding for this work either.
"If there are no political decisions, people will have to leave their homes due to climate change," says Ridley.
Finland supports humanitarian work and long-term solutions According to OCHA, the most important donor to the crisis is the United States, followed by the European Union and its Member States.
Finland is supporting the Horn of Africa by providing both immediate humanitarian aid and longer-term assistance, according to Sofie From-Emmersberger, Director General of the Department for Africa and the Middle East at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
"We have increased our humanitarian assistance to the Horn of Africa," she says.
Finland is supporting various organizations operating in the region, such as OCHA, the UN Refugee Agency (UNCHR), the World Food Program (WFP), the Red Cross and Save the Children.
“Our funding is now €8.05 million and we are looking at ways to raise more money,” says From-Emmersberger.
According to From-Emmersberger, Finland is focusing especially on the most vulnerable groups, such as women, children and people with disabilities.
She emphasizes the importance of addressing the root causes of the crisis and finding long-term solutions.
It is important to support peace and prosperity, good governance, livelihoods, innovation and the resilience of societies.
"We also need to move forward on these tracks," From-Emmersberger says.
As part of the European Union, Finland participates in two crisis management operations in Somalia.
In the field of diplomacy, Finnish Member of Parliament Suldaan Said Ahmed, who was appointed Special Representative on Mediation by Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto, is currently reviewing how Finland could support dialogue between the different parties in Somalia.
"We have to work for the long term in general, and this has been the way of Finland for decades," says From-Emmersberger.
Nearly one million people (IOM – DTM North Mozambique Crisis – Round 16) are currently displaced in northern Mozambique after fleeing their homes in search of safety, due to the conflict that began in Cabo Delgado province in October 2017.
Many people have been displaced multiple times, needing to abandon their few possessions, livelihoods, loved ones and communities with each displacement.
Living through such prolonged conflict, with little or no prospect of a stable future, has profound consequences for mental health.
Five years later, some communities in Cabo Delgado still live in constant fear and continue to experience trauma and loss.
Many have witnessed murders; others have lost contact with their relatives and still don't know where they are.
“We are separated from our family and from the rest of our people,” says a community leader from Mocímboa da Praia, a district in northern Cabo Delgado.
He has had to start from scratch over and over again, and currently lives in a temporary settlement in the Palma district.
"We're starting to hear now that there are some people in one place and some in another," he says.
“Sometimes we hear about a sick family member, but we have no way to visit them.
Sometimes we hear that someone passed away, but we can't reach them.
Every day that passes, we get sadder about it.” Tatiane Francisco, director of mental health activities at Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), says that acute stress and anxiety due to uncertainty and lack of perspective, as well as loss and grief, are the main reasons why people look for mental health consultations in our projects.
“The stories that people bring us are of mothers who had to leave their children during an escape and do not know how they are today; children who witnessed the death of their parents; people who witnessed the death of other family members, ”says she Tatiane.
“When you are constantly under this fear, it is difficult to think about the future, it is difficult to plan things.
You are still living in survival mode.
People have been living in a kind of limbo for years."
Maria Maleve, an elderly woman from Ancuabe, arrived in the city of Montepuez in July after an outbreak of violence that uprooted more than 80,000 people (OCHA Situation Report - Flow of displacement in Cabo Delgado and Nampula, Mozambique, June 1 to July 21, 2022) for a few weeks.
“When the war broke out, we all ran in a different direction,” says Maria.
“I came here alone, with a child I found on the way.
His father was shot to death.
Her mother was kidnapped.
I would like the war to end so that we can return to our land.” Like Maria, many people dream of returning home and rebuilding their lives as farmers, fishermen and community members.
However, uncertainty, fear and trauma make it difficult to return to normal life.
“Right now, in different parts of the province, there are people both returning to their places of origin and people who are forced to flee and begin to move again,” says Tatiane.
“There may be no violence where there are some people, but for them there is no guarantee that this will not change in the future.” “In other words, psychologically, the message our bodies get when we still see violence elsewhere is 'the attacks are still happening and we have no way of predicting where the next one will be,'” says Tatiane.
On top of that, extreme violence often leaves painful psychological scars for those who suffered it.
"Some people have the courage and desire to return to where they are from, but others, due to the type of events they have experienced, prefer not to risk going back until they are sure that things are fine," says Josuel Moreira, a MSF psychologist in Palma.
“This shows us that both the experiences and the feelings associated with these past experiences are still vivid and people still carry them.
You can't even call it post-traumatic stress; the trauma is still there.” As the conflict in Cabo Delgado continues, these mental health issues, as well as access to basic services such as health care, water, food and shelter, continue to be a struggle for many.
MSF teams have been working in response to the crisis in Cabo Delgado since 2019.
In 2021 alone, more than 52,000 malaria cases were treated, almost 3,500 individual mental health consultations were carried out, and more than 64,000 people attended group activities.
Due to the volatile and constantly changing context, our teams have had to be flexible, agile and adaptable.
Humanitarian assistance is disproportionately distributed in Cabo Delgado, with more assistance being provided in the south of the province, which is considered more stable.
In some of the districts where we work, such as Macomia, Palma and Mocímboa da Praia, often no or very few organizations have a regular presence.
More needs to be done so that people in hard-to-reach areas have access to life support.
“Many people lost not only their possessions, their families, but also their sense of dignity, of living as people,” says Josuel.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajia Sadiya Farouq says Nigeria is moving from just giving humanitarian relief to its vulnerable population to empowering them with skills.
Farouq told the News Agency of Nigeria in New York at the 77th session of UN General Assembly that the Nigerian Government was working to build the resilience of the population.
The minister spoke on the sidelines of High-Level Side Event on “Strengthening Resilience and Sustaining Development: A Humanitarian Development Peace Approach to Leaving No one Behind.
’’ “We are shifting away from just giving humanitarian relief to see how we can build the resilience of our people and empower them.
“We are moving towards a sustainable way of building the lives of the vulnerable people, those who have been affected by displacement to have a dignified way of life by empowering them.
“We have provided for them different empowerment opportunities for them to learn different skills, to earn a living with those skills and for their prosperity,’’ she said.
According to her, empowering the vulnerable population is a right step to reduce poverty, noting that Nigeria has done well under the present administration to reduce poverty index.
The minister said that the United Nations (UN) had been working with Nigeria to achieving sustainable development, like eradication of poverty and addressing issues of vulnerability.
Earlier at the event, UN Deputy Secretary General, Ms Amina Mohammed said humanitarian action and lifesaving relief remained critical, saying, “we must recognise that protracted crises require a synchronised and complementary development and peace support.
“This must be supported by long term investments to address the drivers and the root causes of crises in the first place, and the ensuing fragility.
“This is at the core of the humanitarian development peace nexus approach.
We know that investing in development is the best way to prevent the crisis in the first place.
“This is where I would like to commend the Government of Nigeria for now, practically in its adoption of the triple nexus approach, particularly in relation to those who have been displaced internally and supported by the creation of enabling frameworks and mechanisms,’’ she said.
The UN deputy chief said the Government of Nigeria also used the triple Nexus approach beyond the issue of finding durable solutions to empowering its displaced population “ For example, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) kickstarted 1.5 million U.
S. dollar pilot project to the Nigeria humanitarian fund.
’’ According to her, the fund is to address durable solutions, working closely with the governance of Borno, Adamawa, Yobe, and the UN under the leadership of UNDP.
She said that UN had helped on the stabilisation programme and restoration of the social contract working with the private sector and resulted in constructing many permanent shelters and classrooms in those states.
“The stabilisation efforts are conducted under the auspices of the Lake Chad Commission’s regional stabilisation strategy, and this is an important cross border coordination and cooperation, which is even more pressing not just in the Lake Chad region, but also in the Sahel.
In her remarks, Minister of Women Affairs, Mrs Pauline Tallen said women were driving force in disaster risk reduction, and emergency response and therefore should not be left unattended to.
“We see this thing during the public lighting pandemic, where 70 to 80 per cent of health volunteers are women.
“Women were at the forefront front of risk communications and are trusted by their communities,’’ she said.
The General Debates, which started on Sept. 20 with the theme: “Watershed moment: transformative solutions to interlocking challenges,’’ ended on Monday.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres and African leaders have launched a high-level panel to assess the situation in the Sahel and make recommendations on ways to foster international engagement and map out responses to the region’s complex challenges.
The Sahel extends across Africa from the Atlantic Ocean in the west to the Indian Ocean in the east and runs through parts of Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, and Sudan.
The independent panel was announced on Saturday in New York on the margins of the General Assembly’s annual debate during a High-Level Event on the Sahel.
The evet was held under the auspices of the United Nations, the African Union (AU) Commission, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Group of Five for the Sahel (G5 Sahel).
According to the UN humanitarian affairs office (OCHA) Sahel faces the worst humanitarian needs in years requiring an urgent scale-up of emergency response.
The secretary-general had warned that rising insecurity, including the proliferation of terrorist and other non-State armed groups, coupled with political instability, is creating a crisis in the Sahel that poses a “global threat”.
“The crisis is being compounded by climate change… “and if nothing is done, the effects of terrorism, violent extremism and organized crime will be felt far beyond the region and the African continent,” he said.
In their statements, the Chair of the AU Commission, the President of the ECOWAS Commission, the Executive Secretary of the G5 Sahel and Guterres formally launched Panel on Security and Development in the Sahel, led by former President of Niger Mahamadou Issoufou.
They highlighted the underlying challenges in the Sahel, including the surge in violent extremism, growing fragility of the economies of the region due to the impact of climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as complex political transitions.
They called for coordinated international, regional and local efforts in the Sahel and in the broader region to address the current security, governance and development challenges and adopt people-centred security approaches based on inclusive political strategies.
The participants also called on the international community to scale up responses commensurate to the needs in the region, including by providing much needed technical, financial, material, and logistical support.
They reaffirmed the support of the four organisations to the work of the Independent High-Level Panel and looked forward to the findings of the Independent Strategic Assessment being presented during the 36th Ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly of Heads of State and Government set to be issued in February 2023.
The UAE, through its humanitarian agencies and in cooperation with the Somali Disaster Management Authority (SoDMA) and other authorities, continues to distribute aid to the local population and displaced persons in the areas worst affected by the drought, including the Mahas and Mataban regions in Hiran Governorate.
, Hirshabelle State.
This aid is part of efforts to distribute more than 1,000 tons of relief supplies to the Somali people.
He arrived on an Emirati aid ship at the port of Mogadishu to help meet the needs of an estimated 2.5 million people affected by drought.
Food and relief supplies have been distributed to more than 1,330 displaced and affected families in Bal'ad district in Hirshabelle state, more than 400 families in Hudur city and 470 families in Baidoa, the capital of the southwestern region.
This aid is part of a plan to distribute relief supplies in cooperation with relevant Somali ministries and agencies, notably the Somalia Disaster Management Agency.
Somalia is one of the countries in the Horn of Africa most affected by the drought currently plaguing the region.
The drought facing Somalia is the worst in decades, and there are warnings that the drought will turn into famine.
The United Nations World Meteorological Organization has forecast that the country will brace for a fifth consecutive unsuccessful rainy season.
According to estimates by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), more than seven million Somalis face humanitarian challenges and are in need of food aid.
The Minister of Water Resources, Mr Suleiman Adamu, on Friday called for renewed commitment from all stakeholders to curtail continued reports of cholera outbreaks in parts of the country.
This was the thrust at a stakeholders meeting on National Cholera Prevention, Preparedness and Response Plan in Abuja on Friday.
He said cholera prevention plan was critical as access to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) would go a long way to halt future occurrence and prevent deaths.
The minister was represented by Mr Ibiyemi Olu-Daniels, Deputy Director, WASH Response and Collaboration, with the ministry.
According to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), no fewer than 91 deaths have been recorded from cholera from January to July 31, 2022, with a total of 3,610 suspected cases.
He noted that his ministry had evolved strategies by constructing water schemes like boreholes, dams and toilet facilities in curtailing the spread of waterborne diseases and open defecation practices.
According to him, developing a work plan will ensure equitable intervention spread, bringing the concept of inclusiveness, as all key stakeholders are identified with their roles succinctly spelt out.
“All these would in the long run ensure resources are dutifully put into use in a timely and coordinated manner to achieve desired results.
“Developing this cholera plan became necessary, owing to the brutal blow cholera dealt on our nation a year ago where cases reported nationally were about 111,062 with 3,604 deaths.
“As a result, conscious and deliberate efforts like these aimed at preventing a reoccurrence of such an ugly and perhaps embarrassing scenario, where enormous cases of cholera outbreak was reported, is certainly a commendable development.
’’ Adamu added that cholera prevention, preparedness and response plan crosscuts the purview of many ministries, departments and agencies, calling for more commitment.
According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Activities (OCHA), more than 1,000 cases of cholera have been reported in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states since May 2022. The UN body attributed cholera cases to the widespread contamination of water sources by flooding, as the rainy season entered its peak.
OCHA says there is an urgent need for more designated and equipped Cholera Treatment Centers, Oral Rehydration Points and rapid testing kits.
It noted that states have been affected by flooding since the start of the rainy season, with an estimated 14,825 people, mainly the elderly, women and children being displaced.
The Director General, Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA), Mr Clement Nze, had urged all stakeholders to intensify and step up efforts to avert flood related disasters in their domains.
He said the nation was now in the peak of flooding season, saying the country is at the lowest point of River Niger Basin.
“This means that once the upper catchment of the Basin gets flooded, Nigeria should be prepared to experience flooding.
“As at Sept. 16, the flow of River Niger at Niamey, Niger Republic, upstream of Nigeria, is within the normal limits.
’’ He said the release of excess water from the Lagdo dam, which started on Sept. 13, would be a continuous process till the inflow into the Lagdo reservoirs recedes.
He said water releases from Lagdo dam, had contributed to the increase in volume of flow of River Benue, contributing to the recent flooding in parts of the country.
Once again, the people of Ethiopia are "plunged ...
into the intractable and deadly consequences" of the conflict between government troops and forces loyal to Tigrayan separatist fighters, who are likely to be responsible for war crimes, investigators from the human rights.
In its first comprehensive report to the Human Rights Council in Geneva, the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia said it believed crimes against humanity had also been committed in the intermittent war that broke out in the northern region in November 2020.
Worst Rights Violations Serious rights violations in Tigray were "ongoing", the report said, noting that fighting resumed last month, breaking a five-month ceasefire.
“Extrajudicial killings, rape, sexual violence and starvation of the civilian population as a method of warfare” have occurred in Ethiopia since the early days of the conflict, the Council heard.
Citing information from "credible sources," the Commission's chairwoman, Kaari Betty Murungi, who like the other two members of the panel is a UN-appointed independent rights expert, said there had been an "escalation" in attacks with drones by government forces that used explosives.
weapons “with wide-area effects in populated areas”, since hostilities resumed.
"Our research indicates that its use has exposed civilians to new and increased risks," she said.
"We have received reports of drone strikes in Tigray in the last four weeks, which have allegedly killed and injured civilians, including children."
As for the Tigrayan forces, Ms. Murungi insisted that they had also likely committed serious human rights abuses “that amount to war crimes”.
These included “large-scale killings of Amhara civilians, rape and sexual violence, and widespread looting and destruction of civilian property in Kobo and Chenna in August and September 2021.
“During their house searches in Kobo, for example, security forces of Tigrayan searched for weapons and dragged many men from their homes, executing them, often in front of their families.” Desperate conditions Today, international humanitarian access to Tigray remains blocked, despite the dire situation there, Ms. Murungi said.
There were reasonable grounds to believe that the federal government and its allies “looted and destroyed property essential to the survival of the civilian population in Tigray, killing livestock, destroying food stores and razing crops while implementing severe restrictions on humanitarian access to Tigray.
she added, noting that for more than a year, six million people have been denied access to electricity, internet, telecommunications and banking.
This denial and obstruction of access to basic services, food, medical care and humanitarian aid "is equivalent to crimes against humanity of persecution and inhumane acts," insisted the president of the Commission.
Starvation 'tactic' "We also have reasonable grounds to believe that the federal government is committing the war crime of using starvation as a method of warfare," the leading independent human rights expert continued, noting that Tigrayan forces reportedly looted the humanitarian aid.
According to the latest dire humanitarian data from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), conflict and displacement in northern Ethiopia have left more than nine million people in need in the Tigray, Afar and Amhara, while severe drought affects millions.
more in the south.
Citing OCHA, Ms. Murungi said that the combined effect of the federal government's measures had left 90 per cent of the population in dire need, an increase of 80 per cent since the start of the conflict.
"The majority of Tigray's population must now survive on limited and nutritionally inadequate diets," he said, adding that there has also been "an increase in child marriages and child labour, human trafficking and transactional sex as desperate means."
Tigrayan women and girls not forgiven According to the Commission's president, rapes and crimes of sexual violence had occurred "on a staggering scale" since the early days of the conflict, "with Ethiopian and Eritrean forces and regional militias attacking the women and girls of Tigraya with particular attention”.
violence and brutality”.
Tigrayan forces also committed rape and sexual violence against Amhara women and girls and Eritrean refugees, Ms. Murungi said, highlighting the devastating long-term impacts on survivors that included trauma, unwanted pregnancies and HIV infection.
'Unfair and biased scrutiny' Rejecting the report's conclusions, the Ethiopian delegation repeated its claim that the federal government had been subjected to “unfair and biased scrutiny” in the Council for more than a year.
Addis Ababa pledged to respond to an "insurrectionary armed group that has endangered the territorial integrity of the country," the Council heard.
The international commission of human rights experts on Ethiopia was established after the Human Rights Council adopted resolution S-33/1 on December 17, 2021.
It tasked a panel of three human rights experts, appointed by the President of the Human Rights Council, “to conduct a thorough and impartial investigation into the allegations of violations and abuses of international human rights law and violations of international humanitarian law and international refugee law in Ethiopia committed since 3 December November 2020 by all parties to the conflict.”
The United Nation’s Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has announced the released of 10 million dollars under the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERT) for urgent aid to victims in a Northeast Nigeria food and nutrition crisis.
This is contained in a statement by OCHA in Maiduguri on Monday.
The UN says no fewer that 1.74 million children under the age of five are expected to suffer from acute malnutrition in north east this year.
“This CERF allocation is the latest in a concerted effort to address the food and nutrition crisis.
In May 2022 CERF allocated 15 million dollars to support the catastrophic food insecurity and nutrition response.
“In September, the Nigeria Humanitarian Fund (NHF) provided two allocations of 2.5 million dollars and one milliondollars to enable humanitarian actors to provide urgent nutrition support in line with the interagency 351 million dollar-multisector plan to address the desperate food and nutrition situation,” the statement said.
In noted that the consequences of inaction were a matter of life and death as more than 5,000 were expected to die while those who survive could face lifelong disabilities.
Mr Matthias Schmale, the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Nigeria was quoted as saying,: “We urgently need to close the funding gap to rapidly scale-up the response and implement immediate life-saving measures.
“For the thousands of children trying to survive, additional funding is needed today, not tomorrow.
Abdirahman Abdi Ahmed's path to helping his fellow Somalis mired in humanitarian crises in Jubaland, southern Somalia, was tortuous.
It was also a journey that left him with a deep awareness of some of the challenges his countrymen and women face in such circumstances: displacement, despair and self-doubt.
“The plight of internally displaced persons (IDPs) and refugees is not new to me, I lived through it and understand what it means, having spent most of my life outside my country,” he says.
Mr. Ahmed was born in 1988 into a family of eight in Afmadow, a city of some 200,000 people located in the Lower Juba region of the Federal Member State of Jubaland in southern Somalia.
His education changed dramatically when the Somali civil war broke out three years later.
The conflict forced his family to flee across the border to northern Kenya, where they settled in the town of Garissa and tried to build a new life for their members.
There, Mr. Ahmed attended Boystown Primary School from 1997 to 2004 and then County Secondary School from 2005 to 2008.
To Zambia In 2010 he received a scholarship to study at Cavendish University in Zambia, where he graduated with a BA in economics in 2015.
Her experiences in Zambia added to her understanding of humanitarian issues and the impact of helping people in need.
While studying, he spent two years working as a monitoring and evaluation assistant in the Zambian Ministry of Community Development on a maternal and child health project supported by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
This involved traveling and interacting with residents of the Maheba refugee camp in Zambia, which at the time housed tens of thousands of refugees from countries including the Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, Sudan and even Somalia.
After graduating, he was employed by the Zambian Refugee Commissioner's Office in the Zambian Ministry of Home Affairs, as an advocate for refugees and asylum seekers in the country.
"I used to spend time with the refugees in the camps, listening to their stories and trying to keep their spirits up so they wouldn't lose hope and hope for good morning," says the 34-year-old.
"When I told them how I ended up there, they felt they weren't alone."
He returned to Somalia But the pull of Somalia was strong and he returned to his homeland at the end of 2016, heading to Jubaland's provisional capital, Kismayo.
He got a job as director general at the federal member state's Ministry of the Interior, where he was in charge of managing federal relations and reconciliation efforts.
Despite the new responsibilities, he remained involved in humanitarian affairs and was in charge of managing and coordinating the resettlements of people returning from Dadaab camp in Kenya, the third largest complex in the world hosting refugees and asylum seekers.
He was also able to attend to the needs of internally displaced persons (IDPs) and returnees in Kismayo, where there are currently a few hundred people who integrate and share day-to-day life with host communities.
In his role as director, he was responsible for implementing the 'Midnimo' (Unity) programme, which was initially supported by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and UN-Habitat.
Midnimo is a collection of humanitarian, development and peacebuilding projects that provide durable solutions to IDPs and host communities.
The program was piloted in Jubaland and the southwestern states, and later expanded to other states.
In early 2019, Mr. Ahmed was transferred to the Jubaland Ministry of Youth and Sports, again as Director General.
Still, the needs of the region's displaced people remained a major focus for him and even coincided with his work in the ministry.
For example, they rehabilitated the Inji youth center in Kismayo with the help of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), while the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) provided the necessary equipment and facilities.
“Today, as anyone can see, about 500 people are receiving vocational training and have access to sports there, including internally displaced people and returnees from the Dadaab refugee camp,” says Mr. Ahmed.
“The fact is that educated youth contribute to job creation opportunities, allowing them to earn a living legally.” Humanitarian Minister In May 2021, Mr. Ahmed's efforts and passion were recognised: he was appointed Jubaland Minister for Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management.
The three regions of the federal Member State currently host almost a million displaced people due to the ongoing conflict with the terrorist group Al-Shabaab, the severe drought currently affecting Somalia and, more specifically in Jubaland, the regular floods, which They are often a consequence of drought.
induced dry soil.
“[In 2018]I personally rescued a mother and her six children and relocated them to a safer place, in a house built for IDPs and returnees.
Those people had been displaced by drought and conflict; then they fell victim to the floods,” she says, recalling the flash floods that displaced hundreds of internally displaced people in the Farjano Dalhis area of Kismayo district.
In his new position as Minister for Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, his concern for Jubaland residents affected by such crises became even more urgent.
Mr. Ahmed worked with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) to ensure that affected people received support.
“With the necessary resources, community engagement and accountability, the suffering of displaced people can be reduced.
We can do something about the status quo which, at the moment, is flood, drought or famine in Somalia,” he says.
Mr. Ahmed strongly believes that the response to the humanitarian crises in Somalia must include good governance and durable solutions, the latter integrating measures such as water catchment areas and the construction of gabions on riverbanks to prevent flooding recurring.
“Somalia is endowed with natural resources and needs good governance that creates a peaceful environment for Somalis to reach their full potential and focus on long-term solutions that mitigate the impact of repeated natural crises,” he says.
"As long as there is no concrete long-term strategy, the trend is likely to continue."
The Federal Government of Somalia has developed and adopted the National Strategy for Durable Solutions 2020-2024 for Somalia to comprehensively address the root causes of displacement and its consequences.
The long-term intent of the strategy is to reduce and mitigate the adverse impacts of displacement created by recurrent natural disasters and related linkages to conflict and governance.
In July this year, Mr. Ahmed's career path took a new turn with his appointment as Minister of Planning for Jubaland.
But despite the new approach, he says the humanitarian needs of his fellow citizens will remain a priority while he is at the decision table.
“While I am in charge of the Ministry of Planning, I will work to develop a strategy that leads to lasting solutions for people in need,” he says.
Famine specter Somalia is currently facing a humanitarian crisis caused by the worst drought in at least 40 years.
Some 7.8 million people, nearly half the population, are affected, with some areas already at risk of famine.
Although the number of people reached by aid organizations has quadrupled since January to 5.3 million, a further increase in aid is needed, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).
In his remarks to the UN Security Council on Wednesday 7 September, the UN Secretary-General's Special Representative for Somalia, James Swan, called on all parties in Somalia to facilitate humanitarian access and on donors to increase financing.
“With ever-increasing needs and a projected fifth failed rainy season, further scaling up humanitarian assistance is critical.
I call on all parties in Somalia to facilitate humanitarian access.
I call on all friends of Somalia to urgently increase the necessary funding," the UN official said.
Inspite record government donations this year, the United Nations lacks the humanitarian aid funds required to make it through the year.
UN agencies were short 32 billion U.
S. dollar to meet increased global needs until the end of December, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported on Friday in Geneva.
A total of 17.6 billion dollars was received this year, more than ever before, but the deficit remained larger than ever as funding requirements reached 49.5 billion dollars this year.
Worldwide hunger, displacement, conflicts and the effects of the climate crisis had contributed to the dire situation, leaving 204 million of the world’s most vulnerable people in need of help.
UN humanitarian chief Martin Griffths said millions of people suffered unprecedented hardship in conflicts, droughts, floods and other humanitarian emergencies where the scale of needs had vastly outpaced the resources we have available.
“In some states and regions, less than 20 per cent of the required aid to provide people with food, shelter and medical assistance has been received, an OCHA spokesperson said.
This included Myanmar, El Salvador and Mozambique, for example.
The best funded areas included Libya, Somalia and the Central African Republic, where between 69 per cent and 79 per cent of estimated required aid had been provided.
Griffiths released 100 million dollars from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) on Friday to help aid underfunded humanitarian operations.
That brought the total amount released from the fund to 250 million dollars this year, a record high.
The money would be distributed across 11 states including Yemen, South Sudan, Myanmar, Nigeria and Bangladesh.