Somalia experiencing one of its worst drought crises in a decade following four consecutive poor rainy seasons. Over 3.9 million people are facing acute water shortages with most of surface water sources dried up and significant number of strategic boreholes have developed mechanical failure due to over-operation and are in need urgent rehabilitation. The WASH humanitarian crisis continues to worsen across the country and is likely to deteriorate in the coming months. The existing severe water shortages are particularly expected to continue through the Hagaa (June-September) dry season.
Rangeland conditions have been deteriorating faster than usual, driving widespread livestock deaths and population displacements. As of 10 June 2022, A significant water shortages have been reported in many areas in Somaliland with Sanaag, Waqoyi Galbeed, Sool and Togdheer regions being the hardest hit areas. Severely alarming water shortage have also been reported in several districts in Puntland, SWS, Jubaland,
Galmudug and Hirshabelle exposing a higher number of vulnerable people to significant water shortage risks. The pastoral population living in the hard-to-reach areas are the worst affected.
WASH Humanitarian partners and authorities continued to scale up assistance to mitigate the adverse outcomes of the drought emergency in Somalia. As of 31st May, WASH Cluster partners have collectively reached over 1M people with Water, Sanitation and Hygiene assistance. However, funding Gap is a key challenge that limits partners’ capacity to reach people in need with lifesaving WASH assistance. Urgent large-scale efforts aimed at saving lives and protecting livelihoods are therefore needed to meet the needs of the most vulnerable and prevent loss of life. The Cluster partners started to scale up emergency services focusing on water trucking, the rehabilitation non-functional boreholes and extension of existing water systems and the construction of new water points for communities affected by drought. The cluster will focus on the affected areas that lack adequate coverage in terms of WASH services in order to ensure optimal usage of water sources, sustainability and mitigation of water and sanitation-borne diseases such as acute watery diarrhea (AWD) and cholera.
According to CHIRPS preliminary remote sensing data for April 1-31 May 2022, few areas in Togdheer, Awdal, Waqoyi Galbed and and few pockets in Sanaag, Nugaal, Mudug,
Galgudud, Hiraan and large parts of SWS received 70-100 millimeters (mm) of rainfall, while localized areas in Jubaland and South West Sate have received rainfall amounts exceeding 100 mm (Figure 2). Conversely, large parts of Somalia received less than 70 mm. In addition, compared to the 39-year average, the amount of rainfall received across Somalia during the 2022 Gu rains is translated into below average (Figure 3). Overall, the country continues to endure severe drought, and ground conditions are driest in Waqooyi Galbeed, Muug, Nugaal, Bay, a few areas in Lower Juba and Lower Shabelle, Sool and Sanaag regions. According to the satellite-derived eVIIRS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) for May 21-31, negative vegetation anomalies are widespread.
Enormous deficits are visible across Somalia, indicative of poor cropping and pasture conditions (Figure 5) due to the cumulative effect of the four-season drought.