UN seeks US$186 million to help Somalis affected by COVID-19

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The UN humanitarian agencies are seeking 186.2 million U.S. dollars to meet the immediate health and humanitarian needs of people affected by COVID-19 in Somalia.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said it has only received 37 million dollars or 16.4 percent of the total funding required, to implement the Somalia component of the COVID-19 Global Humanitarian Response Plan.

“Almost half of the funding so far received has been provided for distribution across multiple clusters including health, protection, nutrition and WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene),” OCHA said in its latest report on COVID-19.

It said the remaining funds have been allocated primarily for food security and protection among others.

The UN agency said the COVID-19 pandemic has worsened Somalia’s humanitarian and socioeconomic crises, exacerbating pre-existing vulnerabilities and hurting livelihoods, especially among low-income families.

Analysis by the Famine Early Warning Systems Network and Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit indicates that poor urban households, IDPs and pastoralists are likely to be most affected by an estimated 3 to 50 percent decline in annual external remittances, an anticipated 25 to 35 percent decline in annual livestock exports, lower labor demand, and above-average imported staple food prices.

The UN agency said daily confirmed COVID-19 cases have declined in recent weeks, but overall numbers remain high with 3,135 cases, 1,464 recoveries and 93 deaths recorded as of Tuesday.

It said humanitarian partners are continuing to expand COVID-19 responses to mitigate the further spread and impact of the pandemic.

Somalia is also struggling to contain floods and desert locusts, creating a triple threat. Enditem

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