Mid-Year Review of the Consolidated Appeal for the Central African Republic 2010
So far this year, lengthy but significant progress has been made in peace consolidation in the Central African Republic (CAR). However, it has not brought any dividends to the 1.5 million people most affected in the north and east of the country. Rather, the overall humanitarian situation has deteriorated, leaving increasing numbers of people in need.
National elections initially scheduled for May 2010 have been postponed, and are expected to take place by the end of the year. Despite some progress, the disarmament of rebel group combatants as part of the peace process is still pending. Meanwhile, stalled negotiations with groups not involved in the Libreville Peace Agreement have led to violence resuming in the centre-north, leading to further population displacements. In the north-eastern Vakaga region bordering Chad and Sudan, insecurity prevails in the absence of State authorities, critically hindering humanitarian access. The continuous violence perpetrated by the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in the far south-east has left up to 50 villages burned or empty. The violence also triggered the displacement of more than 15,000 traumatized civilians. In these areas, the protection of civilians remains a great concern as relief organizations face a steady erosion of humanitarian access. In late 2009, violence and political instability in neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) triggered the arrival of 18,000 refugees in the south of the country.
While maintaining its strategic objectives for the year, the humanitarian community is adapting its approach so it can better respond to the evolving situation. New emergency programmes have been developed to respond to the new crisis in the south-east and to the immediate needs of DRC refugees in the south. Due to growing insecurity, humanitarian agencies operating in the north-east have reviewed their approach, increasingly maintaining their delivery capacity through national partners.
A greater emphasis has been given to recovery activities in the west, not only to address the appalling situation for the population, but also to pave the way for the return of internally displaced people (IDPs) and refugees, and contribute to building a more conducive environment for reintegrating former combatants. Overall, relief activities in CAR not only bring assistance and early recovery support to communities severely affected by the conflict, but they also indirectly contribute to peace consolidation. In the absence of State authority in these areas, the strengthening of community organizations is critical to avoid, or at least mitigate, further crisis.
Health, Nutrition, Water and Sanitation, Food Security and Protection have been identified as priority sectors in the CAR consolidated appeal 2010. Health indicators remain appalling in CAR, some being the worst in the world. CAR is also prone to numerous epidemics and faces huge challenges in fighting HIV/AIDS and malaria. Protection of civilians and respect of human rights remain of serious concern in conflict-affected areas, i.e. in the north and south-east of the country. These two sectors are critically underfunded to date, despite relief organizations’ increasing expertise gained in the field since 2007, and the consolidation of the strategy through the well-functioning respective clusters. As a result, mortality indicators and life expectancy continue to deteriorate in 2010. Human rights abuses have not been limited much further than in 2009 and new forced displacements have multiplied, with the cumulated number of IDPs now reaching 192,029.
The mid-year review (MYR) of the 2010 Consolidated Appeal comprises 167 projects (originally 135), requiring US$ 144.6 million (originally $113.6 million) to conduct critical humanitarian actions for the year. $50 million (35% of the revised requirement of $144.6 million) has been funded. The top-priority category of projects is only 40% funded, and should receive first attention from donors. Thirty-three additional projects are designed to respond to the new needs of those affected by the LRA in the south-east and the refugee population in the south.