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Riverine areas along the Juba likely to remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) through March

  • Food Security Outlook Update
  • Somalia
  • November 2014
Riverine areas along the Juba likely to remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) through March

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  • Key Messages
  • Current Situation
  • Updated Assumptions
  • Projected Outlook Through March 2015
  • Key Messages
    • With only some, very limited income from labor, areas along the Juba River from Buaale in Middle Juba to Jamame District in Lower Juba will remain in Crisis (IPC Phase3) through March 2015. River flooding in October and flash floods in November destroyed planted crops and infrastructure. They have also reduced labor demand.

    • Outside of riverine areas in the Jubas, most areas remain Stressed (IPC Phase 2) and are likely to remain so through March. Agropastoral areas in Hiraan and Gedo will likely have below-average Deyr production in January/February, though to the situation in Hiraan is still likely to improve from Crisis (IPC Phase 3) to Stressed (IPC Phase 2) after the harvest.

    Current Situation
    • While the Deyr rains started early in many places, mainly in the northern and central regions, the rains subsided and were rather week from October 10 to 31. Most of the South and the Northeast remained dry, but there were rains in Bay, Bakool, parts of Gedo, and Middle and Lower Shabelle. In the first three weeks of November, average amounts of rains with good spatial coverage were received in most southern region, including Lower and Middle Juba, which had been dry since the beginning of the season. However, most of the northern and central regions remained dry during the first three weeks of November.
    • Crop germination has occurred, and most activities are occurring on time at normal or slightly increased levels in most of Lower and Middle Shabelle, Bay, and Bakool. In Middle and Lower Juba, agricultural labor demand was low in October and November, and few crops have germinated, primarily prevented by the flooding. In Gedo and Hiraan, crops are germinating, but lower levels of labor demand and of other activities were reported.
    • Pasture availability improved in most pastoral and agropastoral areas in November. However, in Coastal Deeh and neighboring parts of Addun Pastoral livelihood zone as well as in parts of Bari and Nugal Regions in the Northeast, pasture availability has remained low. As a result of pasture and water resources improving, livestock production and values increased, except in the areas mentioned above, along with parts of Gedo, Hiraan, and Middle and Lower Juba. Camel calving started at the expected medium rate. Thus far, a medium to low conception rate for goats and sheep is being reported. Milk availability has increased, and average to above average milk production has been observed in most of Sool and Sanaag Regions.
    • Pastoral and agropastoral areas have been increasingly insecure, especially during the zakat season in early October. The number of assassinations in Mogadishu and Lower Juba has also increased.

    Updated Assumptions

    The current situation has not affected the assumptions used in FEWS NET’s most likely scenario for October to March 2015, the following assumptions have been updated:

    • In previous reports, it was assumed that El Niño would lead to average to above-average rainfall over Somalia. It appears that the delayed establishment of El Niño is resulting in average to slightly below-average rainfall amounts for the remainder of the Deyr rains in November and December in most parts of the country. The rains are likely to continue to be erratically distributed over time and space.
    • In October, it was assumed that insecurity would primarily be concentrated in the South. However, increasing insecurity is likely across Somalia due to recent changes in the political situation. Further civil insecurity is likely to reduce humanitarian access, trade, and other economic activities.

    Projected Outlook Through March 2015
    • Agricultural labor demand is likely to be near average in Lower and Middle Shabelle, Bay, and Bakool Regions through December. Average and timely cereal production is anticipated in these areas. However, the somewhat unlikely event of severe river flooding this late in the season along the Shabelle River could reduce the size of the harvest in Jowhar and Balad Districts in Middle Shabelle and Qoryoley District in Lower Shabelle.
    • However, the number of agricultural labor opportunities is likely to be below average in Middle and Lower Juba until the end of December, but it is likely to increase from late December until late February due to late planting following the floods. The harvest will likely be below average, and it will be delayed by two months from January into late February or March in the maize-producing, riverine areas. This off-season crop though is likely to be near or more than is typical for the off-season.
    • Average to below-average cereal harvests are likely in January/February in Hiraan and Gedo Regions as a result of average to below-average Deyr rains. Average cowpea production is anticipated in the central regions, assuming near average rains continue.
    • With the expected increase in conflict, less humanitarian access is likely, including to relatively stable regions that have not seen active conflict in some time. Reduced humanitarian access, trade, and other economic activities would reduce poor households’ access to food and income. 
    • Food security outcomes remain mainly as discussed in FEWS NET’s most likely scenario for October to March 2015. Most of the country is likely to remain Stressed (IPC Phase 2) with some agropastoral areas that are currently in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) likely to improve to Stressed (IPC Phase 2) following the start of the Deyr harvest in January/February. However, Middle and Lower Juba’s riverine areas are now unlikely to see this improvement until the off-season harvest in late February/March. Poor households will therefore likely remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) through early March 2015 in this area.
    Figures Seasonal calendar in a typical year

    Figure 1

    Seasonal calendar in a typical year

    Source: FEWS NET

    Figure 1


    This Food Security Outlook Update provides an analysis of current acute food insecurity conditions and any changes to FEWS NET's latest projection of acute food insecurity outcomes in the specified geography over the next six months. Learn more here.

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