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2R6A2748 Nigeria © Sébastien Duijndam pour Action contre la Faim


Lake Chad

Escalation of violence in the Lake Tchad region

The Baga military bases’ attack in December, followed by raids on Monguno led to the evacuation of humanitarians during few days, threatening the assistance to the vulnerable persons and displacing more individuals. This week, the attack on Rann caused nearly 30,000 people to flee. In total, in the Lake Chad region, almost 2.5 million people are displaced.

We are working in Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad to meet the urgent needs of these new arrivals who join the number of people already affected by the conflict and depend upon humanitarian aid for survival.

Even if the situation raises less interest among the international community, these recent developments show that it is far from resolving.

"Civilians are paying the prices of the violence’s. Their protection must stand as the key priority for all parties in the conflict,"
Shashwat Saraf
country director for Action Against Hunger, Nigeria

“Urgent humanitarian assistance should be provided to the newly displaced while humanitarian assistance and recovery assistance should continue to be provided to internally displaced people and to the host communities affected by the crisis. In 2019, 3,6 million¹ people are food insecure in the Lake Chad Basin.”

Our response

Nigeria: scaling up our response to answer the needs

Since the attack in Kukawa and Baga, we have responded to the needs of the new internally displaced people (IDP) in Monguno local government area and Maiduguri Metropolitan Council (MMC) where most of the newly displaced arrived.

In Maiduguri area, we worked on ensuring that our ongoing programmes cover the health and nutrition needs of the new arrivals in the IDP camps where we had health and nutrition programmes. In addition, we focused on expanding our water, sanitation and hygiene interventions to meet the needs of new arrivals.

“Some actors completely withdraw from Monguno at the time of the attacks for security reasons, explains Shashwat Saraf, we kept some essential staff on the ground and then had a full team in a matter of a couple of days to support the new IDPs”

Since the new violence:

  • We are doing water trucking because of lack of potable water. Total water trucked to the camps is 569,600 liters from the 13th to 30th of January 2019.
  • Nearly 2,000 new registered families – more than 10,000 people – received food assistance
  • 1790 families received hygiene kits
  • 600 families with children under 5 years old and pregnant and lactating women benefited from blanket supplementary feeding program
  • To prevent disease outbreak and meet the sanitation needs, we launched latrine construction in camps. One of the big challenges for any kind of construction (including latrines, boreholes, shelter, etc) is lack of space and IDPs in very congested spaces that provides little room for setting up proper infrastructure.
  • We have screened 90,480 children under 5 years old for malnutrition; severe acute malnutrition rate of the population assessed reaches 1,5% and moderate acute malnutrition 26,44%.
  • To respond to the growing needs we expanded our outreach of primary health care through mobile health teams in addition to the exiting health centres/teams.
Nigéria © Sébastien Duijndam pour Action contre la Faim


© Sébastien Duijndam pour Action contre la Faim

Chad: managing the health situation

As of 25 January, 7505 people who had crossed the lake to Chad had been relocated to the Dar Es Salaam camp, which already hosts 11,300 Nigerian refugees since 2014.

To prevent diseases, especially diarrhea that lead to malnutrition, we distribute hygiene and sanitation kits. In parallel, we conduct hygiene awareness and open defecation prevention sessions.

In total:

  • 2068 families received nonfood items kits; 2 jars of 10 litres, 1 bucket of 15 litres with lid, 12 balls of toilet soap, 6 balls of laundry soap, 6 Aquatabs tablets, 1 torch
  • 440 dignity kits given to women of childbearing age (12-59 years); 2 cotton fabrics of 1×1.5m multi-purpose, 2 pack of 5 menstrual layers per woman
  • 377 child pots given to households with children under 5 years of age.
  • We installed 5 hand pumps to answer the needs of the new arrivals


Cameroon; mobile teams to detect and treat malnutrition

This week 30 000 Nigerians, mainly women, children and elderly arrived in Cameroun. They settled 700 m away from Goura in makeshift shelters.

Since January 28, we deploy two mobile clinics to screen and treat children for malnutrition and provide primary health care both to children and to pregnant and lactating women.

Our teams include nurses, midwifes, health promoters and community volunteers to perform malaria tests, blood glucose tests, hemoglobin tests and urine tests. We administrate basic drugs to treat under 5 years’ old children for malnutrition, malaria, diarrhea and ARI (Acute Respiratory Infection) and to perform antenatal care/skilled deliveries for pregnant women and postnatal care for new born & lactating women. In parallel, we deliver keys health and nutrition message promotion.

In total:

  • 976 children under 5 have been screened
  • From which we detected 42 severe acute malnourished children meaning a rate of 4,3%, and 78 moderate acute malnourished cases meaning a rate of 7,99%
  • The severe acute malnourished children have been immediately admitted to be treated.

ACF is working in coordination with other actors to ensure coverage of health problems of these refugees.

Action Against Hunger response is supported by USAID, SIDA, ECHO, GAC, EU, OFDA, WFP in Nigeria, UNICEF in Chad and GAC in Cameroon.

1 OCHA, Lake Chad Basin; crisis update. N°26. November-December 2018

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