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Republic of South Sudan: Current Acute Food Insecurity Overview May 2014

01/05/2014 - 31/05/2014
South Sudan

Overall, there are currently over 3.5 million people (30% of the total population) in crisis or emergency food insecurity phases. This is about 115% increase compared to the same time last year. However, the food insecurity situation varies widely from State to State, with the three most conflict-affected States (Upper Nile, Jonglei and Unity) currently in more precarious food insecurity conditions as compared to the other seven States in South Sudan. For instance, data from Emergency Food Security Assessments (EFSA, April 2014), indicates that about 35%, 26% and 23% of households (HHs) in Upper Nile, Jonglei and Unity respectively have large food consumption gaps. Similarly, 58%, 40% and 19% of HHs in Unity, Jonglei and Upper Nile respectively have adopted crisis coping strategies. A trend analysis of malnutrition (MUAC) data from 2010-2013 indicates average prevailing rates of malnutrition of about 17% and 18% in Upper Nile and Jonglei respectively. Unfortunately, mortality data is almost non-existent.

Based on the percentage (%) of HHs in emergency phase, the following counties are of concern. (1) Unity: Mayendit, Panyijar, Mayom, Leer and Koch. (2) Jonglei: Uror, Nyirol, Duk, Akobo (west) and Ayod. (3) Upper Nile: Baliet/Akoka, Malakal, Panyikang and Nasir. These three states account for about 2 million people (57% of the total population) who are in crisis and emergency phases. The remaining 1.5 million people (about 43% of the population) in crisis or emergency phases are broken down as follows: Northern Bahr el Ghazal (14%), Lakes (7%), Warrap (7%), Eastern Equatoria (5%), Western Bahr el Ghazal (4%), Western Equatoria (3%), and Central Equatoria (3%).

Delivery of humanitarian assistance is ongoing as follows (1) Jonglei: Ayod, Nyirol, Uror, Duk, Walgak, Fangak, Pochalla, and Pibor. (2) Unity: Panyijar, Mayom, Mayendit and Leer. (3) Upper Nile: Pagak, Nasir, Ulang, Mabior and Malakal. At the moment, without humanitarian assistance, IDPs are more likely to slip into a worse phase.

While a number of counties in Jonglei, Unity and Upper Nile are in emergency, the situation is of particular concern in Uror, Nyirol and Ayod counties in Jonglei; Panyijar, Leer and Mayendit in Unity State. Geographically, a number of these counties are located in the interior of their respective States and potentially suffer from serious access constraints and hence restricted population movements.

The factors that are leading to food security deterioration include the ongoing conflict, which has led to large population displacements, disruption of market functions, dry season food and income access, loss of assets and exacerbated communal cattle rustling. In addition, a cereal deficit in the last season has aggravated food insecurity. However, the availability of livestock products, fish, wild foods, game meat and other wet season resources will cushion HHs from sliding into phase 5 (famine). As a result, currently, there are no areas/Counties in phase 5 (catastrophe/famine).


Food Security ClustersFEWS NETFAOThe Comité permanent Inter-Etats de Lutte contre la Sécheresse dans le Sahel (CILSS)CARE InternationalACF
The World Food Programme (WFP)unicefSICASave the ChildrenOxfamThe Joint research Center (JRC) of the European CommissionIGAD