Mid-Year Review of the Consolidated Appeal for West Africa 2010
The people of West Africa remain confronted with a wide range of threats to livelihoods and protection, ranging from food insecurity to political volatility, bad governance, transnational criminal activities including human trafficking, chronic poverty, or the longer-term impacts of climate change. These trends affect the coping capacity of states, communities and families and, in some instances, present a rising challenge to humanitarian actors regarding the respect of humanitarian principles and human rights.
The widespread prevalence of food insecurity across much of the Sahel is the best indicator of the sub-region’s protracted livelihood crisis. In this part of West Africa, spanning from Mauritania to Chad, millions of individuals and hundreds of thousands of affected children remain hopeful that the political commitment of their national authorities to effectively tackle food insecurity and malnutrition will receive suitable support from the international community to effectively scale up humanitarian actions. Across the eastern parts of the Sahel, poor cash crop production combined with falling livestock prices is the main cause of prevailing food insecurity. In the coming months, food insecurity is likely to continue among poor households in Niger, northeastern Mali and Burkina Faso, northwest and central Mauritania, and far northern Nigeria. In Niger, the situation was so bad it led to the launch of the Emergency Humanitarian Action Plan (EHAP) in April to provide assistance to 7.1 million food-insecure people, and underscoring the determination of Niger’s new national authorities to tackling the worsening food crisis in that country.
With regard to political instability and security, governments and partners in the sub-region have been struggling to minimize the impact on vulnerability of civilians caused by a succession of events: a coup d’état in Niger (February); a military revolt in Guinea-Bissau (April); the fragile ongoing transition process in Guinea-Conakry; the protracted ethnic tensions in northern Ghana with the crossing of thousands of refugees into Togo (April); the outbreaks of religious violence in Nigeria (January and March) which left over 500 dead, thousands of people displaced and reported cases of human rights violations; the drawn-out electoral process in Côte d’Ivoire which has sparked growing frustration among political contenders; the social discontent fueled by the anti-corruption crackdown of the newly elected head of state in Mauritania; and the flare-up of renewed violence in the Casamance region of Senegal.
Criminal activities and human trafficking remain key concerns for governments and their partners. In the northern and northeastern areas of Mali and Mauritania, the abduction of citizens from Western countries by terrorist groups remains a major security concern, and restricts safe access to beneficiaries by development and humanitarian actors. Human trafficking in general is rising due to waves of irregular migrants passing through the region and the fight against child trafficking – a long-standing issue in West Africa – continues to draw the attention and resources of many humanitarian agencies.
Overall, in response to the aforementioned trends, the humanitarian community has pursued the strengthening of its capacity for early warning, emergency response, disaster preparedness and coordination, and reviewed its humanitarian funding requirements through the established CAP review process. In addition to assessing achievements to date, and to analyzing current and upcoming trends, this Mid-Year Review (MYR) of the regional CAP takes into account new and/or revised needs linked to the food crisis affecting over 10 million people across the Sahel region, including activities and needs in the Niger EHAP. The MYR has incorporated the most recent information from a range of development and humanitarian sources to ensure that the CAP’s revised requirements are based on firm and up-to-date assessments, and that the additional funding needed to facilitate access to food, provide nutritional support and scale up assistance to the most vulnerable population groups is needs-based.
Regional CAP requirements increased by more than US$ 120 million following the launch of the Niger EHAP in March, which is an integral part of the CAP, and also in response to increased needs in Mali due to the Sahel food crisis. Following the MYR, the revised requirements are US$568.5 million, representing a 54% increase (nearly $200 million) since the initial launch of the 2010 Regional CAP.