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High prices and insecurity expose IDPs and refugees to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) during the lean season

  • Remote Monitoring Report
  • Togo
  • April 2024
High prices and insecurity expose IDPs and refugees to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) during the lean season

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  • Key Messages
  • Projected Outlook to September 2024
  • Key Messages
    • In northern Togo's Savanes Region, refugees from Burkina Faso, internally displaced persons (IDPs), and poor households are experiencing disrupted livelihoods due to the conflict that has persisted since late 2021. These households are mainly market dependent as they struggled to engage in agricultural activities in 2023, and their food stocks are minimal. Furthermore, due to the increase in prices of basic food items and low incomes, their purchasing power is below average. This leads to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes in some areas of northern Togo, which are expected to persist at least until September 2024.
    • The persistence of attacks against the National Armed Forces in the Savanes Region continues to fuel a climate of insecurity. Although the frequency and intensity of conflicts have decreased over the past six months, clashes between the Jama'a Nusrat ul-Islam wa al-Muslimin (JNIM) and the national security forces are expected to remain stable until at least September, and the number of IDPs and refugees is not expected to increase significantly. However, the persistence of insecurity will not be conducive to the return of IDPs and refugees to their places of origin. This will continue to disrupt agricultural and economic activities during the rainy season, limiting access to food and income for the population in the area.
    • Despite a decrease in the volume of local product offerings during this pre-lean season period, food items generally remain available. However, their prices have been increasing since January, attributed to the low supply during the lean season, as well as the rise in global costs of raw materials. Prices generally remain above the five-year average, especially in the conflict-affected Savanes Region.
    ZoneCurrent AnomaliesProjected Anomalies
    • The spill-over of the Sahel crisis is causing a situation of civil insecurity in the Savanes Region, which is creating IDPs (18,429 individuals in June to July 2023 according to IOM) and driving an influx of refugees into the extreme north of the country.
    • The spill-over of the Sahel crisis is causing a situation of civil insecurity in the Savanes Region, which is creating IDPs (18,429 individuals in June to July 2023 according to IOM) and driving an influx of refugees into the extreme north of the country.
    • The start of the season is typical in the southern part of the country, and significant rains have been recorded since early April, allowing for the planting of maize, peanuts, yams, and cassava.
    • In the Savanes Region, the climate of civil insecurity linked to attacks by armed groups against national security forces and the spill-over of the security crisis in the Sahel will continue. However, the number of attacks and incidents will decrease in intensity and the number of new forcibly displaced people will be reduced.
    • Seasonal forecasts predict average amounts of rainfall, which will be conducive to crop planting and a good 2024/25 agricultural season. However, heavy rains may occur and lead to localized flooding in the Mono and Lake-Togo watersheds. Dry spells between June and September could compromise crop development in certain areas and reduce production.

    Projected Outlook to September 2024
    • Seasonal forecasts predict average rainfall in the southern part of the country from March to May 2024, and average to above-average rainfall from June to September. Localized rainfall was observed across the entire territory at the beginning of April. However, in the southern part of the country (south of the Plateaux and Maritime regions), the first beneficial rains were recorded as early as the first ten days of April, enabling the effective commencement of the major rainy season. On the other hand, in the northern zone, significant rains are expected between May and June.
    • The ongoing agricultural activities in the south of the country are dominated by the planting of staple crops such as maize, peanuts, yams, and cassava. While in the north, agricultural activities are limited to field preparation work, particularly clearing, cleaning, and making mounds for yam cultivation. However, in the Savanes Region, agricultural activities are being disrupted by civil insecurity, which hampers the access of forcibly displaced individuals (IDPs and refugees) to their farmland. The expected harvests in September/October are generally projected to be average in the central-southern zones of the country according to seasonal forecasts, despite some yield reductions in certain areas due to dry spells. However, they will not be favorable in the Savanes Region due to civil insecurity, which limits the access of forcibly displaced households to their farmland and deprives them of their means of production.
    • The availability of basic cereals will decrease during the lean season. Thus, prices of staple foods will be at high levels compared to 2023 and the five-year average. This seasonal upward trend will continue until July (Figure 1).

    Figure 1

    Observed and projected price of sorghum in Cinkasse (Savanes Region)
    Price Projection

    Source: DSID/MAEDR

    • Due to the time required for preparing and maintaining their crop fields, the ability of poor households to engage in other income-generating activities, such as foraging, selling wood, and charcoal production, is limited. This reduces their incomes and limits their access to food. This is typical for this time of year when farming activities occupy most of the producers' time.
    • Poor households, IDPs, and refugees in the prefectures of Kpendjal, Kpendjal-Ouest, Oti, Tone, and Cinkasse in Savanes have lost a significant portion of their means of existence and sources of income. Their food stocks are exhausted, and they will have to resort to the markets to meet their food needs. However, faced with the high cost of food items and weak purchasing power, their access to food will be limited, exposing them to deficits in food consumption and Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes from June to September. In the other northern prefectures (Tandouaré, Oti Sud, and Kéran) poor households may meet their food needs during the lean season but not their non-food needs and will be Stressed (IPC Phase 2).
    • In the northern part of the country, poor households, IDPs, and refugees will not be able to carry out their activities during the agricultural season due to insecurity. They will not have the opportunity to access their farmland or will be limited to cultivating small plots of land, production from which will not meet their consumption needs.
    • In the southern part of the country (Maritime and Plateaux regions), poor households are facing food consumption deficits during the lean season due to the depletion of their stocks, rising food prices, and weakened purchasing power. This situation allows them to meet their food needs but not non-food needs and households will be Stressed (IPC Phase 2). However, starting from July, food consumption is expected to improve due to the new harvests, therefore transitioning to Minimal (IPC Phase 1) levels of food insecurity.
    • The food situation of households in the central part of the country remains relatively stable, as households have access to various sources of income, including agricultural labor, crop sales, small-scale trade, and migration, which enable them to meet their food and non-food needs without resorting to negative coping strategies. They will experience Minimal (IPC Phase 1) outcomes throughout the outlook period.

    Recommended citation: FEWS NET. Togo Remote Monitoring Report April 2024: High prices and insecurity expose IDPs and refugees to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) during the lean season, 2024.

    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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