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The unstable security situation is limiting IDP returns

  • Remote Monitoring Report
  • Central African Republic
  • April 2017
The unstable security situation is limiting IDP returns

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • In spite of the desire of certain displaced households to return to their homes, according to the UNOCHA, there were over 400,000 displaced persons as of January 2017 due to the volatile security situation. Most of these households are continuing to resort to coping to maintain their food access and to reduce their food intake, even with the presence of food assistance deliveries. These households will require continued humanitarian assistance provision to prevent high rates of malnutrition.

    • With the ongoing conflict and its effects on food access and income-generation from most sources, the majority of the country is reportedly experiencing an earlier and more difficult than usual lean season. An analysis of available evidence shows the existence of a food Crisis (IPC Phase 3) in April 2017, which will extend at least through September 2017 for many displaced households, returnees, poor resident households, and host households in northwestern, northeastern, southeastern, and central areas of the country (Ouham, Ouham Pende, Haute Kotto, Haut Mbomou, Banmingui Bangoran, Vakaga, Ouaka, and Basse-Kotto).





    • Sharp rise in the prices of imported foods and livestock to well above-average levels
    • Below-average incomes from most sources
    • Disruption of traditional trade networks
    • Atypical decline in household food stocks in spite of recent harvests
    • Confinement of livestock to localized areas by the continuing conflict
    • Limited access to farmland and seeds and fewer employment opportunities
    • Rise in food prices curtailing food access through the end of the lean season
    • Continued lower than average incomes
    • Continuing displacements
    • Continued below-average flow of cereal trade due to the security crisis and poor road conditions
    • Harsher and earlier than usual lean season and premature recourse to local markets

    Displaced populations, returnees, and host households

    • Loss of livelihoods and consumer purchasing power
    • Well below-average food availability
    • Shortages of supplies on markets in conflict areas
    • Poor food access



    Displaced households have been gradually returning and resettling since the beginning of the year in regions of the country affected by the security crisis. This is helping to start rebuilding social relationships within and between different communities. However, these return and resettlement efforts are hobbled by the continuing fears of displaced households for their safety. In addition, relevant technical government agencies lack the necessary physical, financial, and human resources to ensure social stability within these communities. According to estimates by the UNOCHA, as of January 2017 there were still more than 400,000 internally displaced persons, most of whom rely on humanitarian assistance to meet their basic needs.

    In spite of the more or less normal start-up of farming activities such as land preparation work, crop production for 2017‐2018 (June through January) and income from farm labor are expected to stay below-average due to the effects of the unstable security situation on the supply of farm work and access to farmland by households in affected areas of Ouham, Ouham Pende, Ouaka, Vakaga, Haute-Kotto, Basse-Kotto, Haut Mbomou, and Bamingui Bangoran. There are also below-average levels of food and income from other sources such as animal production, foraging, hunting, fishing, social assistance, and petty trade, while, in most cases, household expenditures on purchases of food supplies, health care, clothing, education, charitable donations, and purchases of farm inputs have increased. This is limiting the satisfaction of basic household food and nonfood needs.

    According to the IPC analysis of acute food insecurity in the CAR in February-March 2017, in spite of the slight reduction in the number of IDPs since the end of 2015, there are still populations in each region of the country experiencing difficulty meeting their basic food needs. The security crisis is significantly affecting the size of livestock herds and herd movements in regular migration corridors. The nutritional situation is a continuing source of concern on account of the poor coverage of health services and the effective lack of treatment programs for malnutrition at the country level. This demonstrates the grim food security situation of poor households in areas affected by the continuing conflict. Household livelihoods such as farming and livestock-raising have been severely undermined by the cumulative effects of the crisis and its repercussions.

    Funding gaps have forced the WFP to cut its initial target group of 700,000 people back to 400,000 recipients receiving trimmed-down food rations. IDPs will receive only a quarter of a basic food basket and the provision of meals in schools in the capital cannot be systematically ensured. A total of 140,000 IDPs are receiving food assistance from the WFP since the end of January 2017.

    With the continuing security crisis and its negative effects on access to normal livelihoods and social stability, poor populations and IDPs in Bangui and the country’s Northwestern, Northeastern, Southern, and Central regions are still unable to fully meet their basic food needs. According to the IPC analysis in February 2017, households in these areas still have limited food access and food consumption gaps, particularly in Ouham. The majority of these households are still resorting to coping to maintain their food access and to cutting their food intake. There will be Crisis (IPC Phase 3) levels of acute food insecurity in receiving areas for IDPs at least through September 2017, with affected households continuing to have difficulty meeting their basic food needs.

    Figures Seasonal calendar for a typical year

    Figure 1

    Seasonal calendar for a typical year

    Source: FEWS NET

    In remote monitoring, a coordinator typically works from a nearby regional office. Relying on partners for data, the coordinator uses scenario development to conduct analysis and produce monthly reports. As less data may be available, remote monitoring reports may have less detail than those from countries with FEWS NET offices. Learn more about our work here.

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