Horn of africa overcoming the crisis Key message

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20 July 2011


Overcoming the crisis

Key message
It is critical that countries and communities in the Horn of Africa have the capacity to protect the vulnerable livelihoods on which so many people’s lives depend, while also strengthening the resilience of affected households and livelihood systems during this crisis and beyond. A combination of immediate humanitarian action and strategic medium-term investments in risk management to promote and safeguard the foundations of food security now and in the future is urgently needed.
Today’s food and nutrition security challenges in the Horn of Africa range from a deepening drought affecting nearly 12 million people (Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Uganda) and conflict to peace transitions (Sudan, South Sudan and northern Uganda), to rising staple and input prices and more localized protracted and seasonal conflicts. Of particular concern are the interlocking vulnerabilities and regional effects of drought, animal disease, conflict and displacement, particularly for populations in southern Somalia.
Effective management of the current crises calls for strong capacities at all levels through:

  • proactive leadership of African governments, the African Union (AU) and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development a (IGAD) in implementing humanitarian, recovery and development strategies;

  • effective, evidence-based, coordinated, accountable and appropriate humanitarian support to save lives through support to life-sustaining livelihoods;

  • close integration of action for risk reduction with humanitarian intervention strategies; and

  • strategic investments in medium- and long-term strategies to enhance livelihood resilience and strengthen local and national capacities for agricultural development and disaster risk management.

The patterns of resilience and vulnerability in particular at the level of households and livelihood systems vary throughout the region, requiring careful monitoring and tailored humanitarian, recovery, risk reduction and development approaches. A brief overview of the immediate and medium- to longer-term strategies for each country is provided in this paper.

Twin tracks to food security
Overall, the drought emergency – the most severe food security emergency in the world – requires concerted, generous and informed response strategies targeted at saving lives and ensuring recovery through supporting agriculture-based livelihood systems, including:

  • protecting the livelihood assets of vulnerable, small-scale herders;

  • ensuring resources for crop production of farmers for the upcoming planting season; and

  • protecting vulnerable households from rising food prices, including through expanded productive safety nets.

Even as there is increased focus on humanitarian responses to the drought emergency, concomitant resources are required for medium- to longer-term sustainable interventions to:

  • achieve sustained and equitable agricultural growth and rural development;

  • ensure adequate availability of and access to nutritious food for all; and

  • build sustainable livelihoods to increase resilience in the face of accelerated disaster cycles and climate variability.

These measures are consistent with the twin-track approach of the updated UN Comprehensive Framework for Action, i.e. to meet the immediate needs of vulnerable populations while building longer-term resilience (the “twin tracks to food security”) and address all aspects of food security – access, availability, use and stability – in order to secure sustainable reductions in hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition.

Successful management of cyclical crises in the agriculture sector
The Horn of Africa is subject to recurrent drought and flood cycles that strongly influence the structure and outcomes of farmers’ and pastoralists’ livelihood systems. More than any external intervention, the strengths of these systems represent the difference between life or death, security or destitution, and stability or risk. Many livelihoods are remarkably resilient but extreme events – as witnessed in some parts of the Horn of Africa today – can overwhelm livelihoods, resulting in the generation of humanitarian crises.
This drought eventually will be broken, most likely by heavy rains that will be a mixed blessing: for example, while restoring livestock water points and rejuvenating parched soils, but the onset of the rains will also bring deadly animal diseases among stressed livestock populations, increasing water-borne vectors that threaten human populations, and damaging infrastructure. It is not too early to engage in risk management measures. Livestock parasites and disease are of particular concern, not only for their direct threat to pastoral and agro-pastoral livelihoods, but also because of their potential impact on lucrative livestock export markets, especially to the Gulf States.
Even as concern is mounting over the present drought crisis, decades of investments by communities, governments, and humanitarian and development actors have reduced vulnerability and enhanced capacities for disaster and conflict management in the Horn of Africa. Risk reduction strategies, formal and informal safety nets, and humanitarian interventions mean that human deaths from starvation and disease are still a serious threat, but less likely today than 20 or 30 years ago – provided that local, national, regional and international responses are adequately supported.
Over time, emergency livelihood interventions in this region have been particularly innovative, saving lives and livelihoods and contributing to the practice of humanitarian action globally. Such innovations in crisis settings among rural communities and with member countries, United Nations (UN) agencies, Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs), the private sector and academic institutions include, inter alia:

  • Rural Livelihood Support

    • community-based animal health networks linked to privatized veterinary services under government coordination;

    • voucher- and cash-based seed fairs to protect local seed supplies, stimulate local markets, and increase access to improved seeds;

    • emergency livestock marketing support, including enhanced roles for women entrepreneurs;

    • cash- and food-for-work safety nets to support the rural labour force in times of crisis and, through productive safety nets, create pathways out of poverty; and

    • community-driven education and health services and income-generating activities, building opportunities for non-farm rural livelihoods, and rehabilitating essential infrastructure.

  • Coordination, Information, Analysis and Communication Systems

    • early warning and analytical systems supported by global, national and livelihood-specific modelling;

    • humanitarian coordination, analysis and support to international, regional, national and subnational systems of crisis management, including the Food Security and Nutrition Working Group (FSNWG) and the La Niña Task Force;

    • mapping of household economies and livelihood systems, as well as hazard profiling; and

    • development and application of the Livestock Emergency Guidelines and Standards (LEGS).

  • Risk Management

    • adaptation of the Hyogo Framework For Action (HFA) into national disaster risk management policies as well as community-based disaster risk management practices; and

    • community-based conflict mitigation measures based on natural resource management strategies for pastoral water points and rangelands.

Notwithstanding positive developments, the risk of loss of key livelihood assets (livestock, crops, land, etc.) remains unacceptably high. There is an urgent need to continue to make progress in protecting and promoting the livelihoods of crop- and livestock-dependent people as these are the ultimate source of food, nutrition and economic security for the vast majority of populations in the Horn of Africa.
Further, the current challenges trace their roots to inadequate investment in the basic foundations of sustainable growth. As such, crisis risks and related vulnerabilities cannot be reversed overnight. For sustained growth, the agriculture sector immediately requires extensive and strategic public investment in improved rural infrastructure, including irrigation and agricultural research, an invigorated policy environment, and a field-action programme that aims to mobilize existing institutions and resources for more efficient delivery of support services.
Humanitarian action, recovery and sustainable development
Many, if not all, of the innovations in humanitarian support to crop- and livestock-dependent populations outlined above have their roots in long-term development investments in the agriculture sector, including strategies for community-based natural resource management, the development of effective animal health systems in harsh and remote areas, disaster risk reduction strategies and innovations in crop production, storage and marketing. Important linkages and positive synergies continue today among the food and agriculture technical communities working in both humanitarian and development contexts.
In a similar vein, long-term strategies for strengthening resilience to the threats of droughts, floods, diseases and pests, conflict and economic shocks are found in the agricultural development policies, strategies and investment plans developed by each country in the Horn of Africa, including those shaped within the context of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) framework, as is the case for Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda. With a nearly universally strong emphasis on developing capacities for the full cycle of disaster risk management, reducing vulnerabilities and building deep resilience, the countries in the Horn, in line with IGAD and AU directions, have transformed their approaches from a narrow reliance on disaster response to a broader risk management strategy, including climate change adaptation.
Achieving recovery after survival and establishing a solid foundation for growth and enhanced resilience to future shocks requires rehabilitation of infrastructure at all levels, and interventions on a significant scale in a wide range of areas that protect and support rural livelihoods. The agriculture development agendas in the region are being supported with an overall increase of political will and growing domestic resources, but this is contrasted against the deepening impact of climate change and continued marginalization and vulnerability within the globalized economy. Consensus has been forged through dialogue and negotiation with governments, communities, civil society, the private sector, UN agencies and NGOs on the key priorities for investments in agricultural development in the Horn of Africa. These strategies are briefly described below. While varying according to context, examples include:

  • infrastructure development, reconstruction and risk-proofing;

  • poverty alleviation, food security and increased rural incomes;

  • agribusiness and agro-industry promotion, increased national, regional and global competitiveness of the private sector, enhanced farmer-to-market linkages, and focused value chain approaches; and

  • sustainable use of natural resources, fisheries and livestock bases.

A number of key principles are crucial in determining whether initiatives can have a positive impact on protecting and rebuilding the livelihoods of the food insecure and enhancing their longer-term resilience to shocks. These principles can be considered as a “package” for the way forward and may be summarized as follows:

  • partnerships (in the design process, implementation and monitoring and evaluation) that generate integration, broad coverage and enhanced quality;

  • strong and genuine community participation as an essential ingredient of success – especially in those initiatives that demand a strong involvement on the part of women;

  • institutional commitment and support;

  • predictable resource flows (from both governments and donors); and

  • sound environmental protection and natural resource management as core elements of livelihood reconstruction in fragile ecosystems.

Regional emergency coordination needs
Emergency response to the drought in the eastern Horn of Africa should be designed within the framework of the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Horn of Africa Plan of Action. The Plan of Action advocates for enhanced support from UN and non-UN agencies to regional- and country-led processes to address chronic hunger and malnutrition, build the resilience of vulnerable livelihoods, and ensure early, appropriate and effective scaling up of assistance in times of acute crises. The FAO-WFP led Global Food Security Cluster is an essential instrument in supporting country level humanitarian coordination.
The FSNWG is a regional, multisectoral, interagency platform established in 2005 in Nairobi for sharing information and building consensus on food security analysis, developing mitigation and resilience strategies and responses for vulnerable households, monitoring cross-border market information, and convening stakeholders for advocacy. Over 20 international NGOs, 10 UN agencies, 14 donors/embassies, regional bodies and international humanitarian institutions are members. The FSNWG, hosted by FAO, covers 12 countries in the region. The FSNWG will be co-chaired by IGAD in future, bringing enhanced legitimacy and enabling stronger dialogue with the AU Food Security Platform.
Resources are needed to support the FSNWG, the La Niña Task Forces, the Regional HIV and Gender-Based Violence in Emergency Working Group and the Regional Gender and Agriculture Network. These networks play an instrumental role in mobilizing and advocating for strategic livelihoods support. The solid attendance at regular meetings reflects the level of interest in the functions offered by these platforms, including increased focus on response analysis and common advocacy with key stakeholders.

Country Overviews
Emergency and recovery needs
Late and erratic rainfall over two rainy seasons has affected Djibouti’s nomadic pastoral population. Efforts are focussed on saving rural livelihoods through improving access to potable water, enhancing essential animal husbandry and agricultural activities, and strengthening the capacity of national institutions to implement and coordinate humanitarian action based on four pillars:

  1. Agricultural production, e.g., constructing household fodder storage facilities; producing supplementary animal food; promoting poultry production (particularly for women); providing small-scale irrigation technology; rehabilitating small-scale production for fodder and food.

  1. Rehabilitation of water points, e.g., rehabilitating surface water catchment facilities and underground cisterns; and developing innovative water supply strategies with the creation of subsurface dams.

  1. Follow-up and monitoring of Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) indicators in the context of risk management for drought, e.g., monitoring food prices; collecting and analyzing information on water points; mapping, analyzing livestock movements; and issuing IPC-based alerts.

  1. Maintaining and protecting livestock populations, e.g., veterinary drugs and equipment to protect animal health and prevent the spread of disease; and rehabilitating regional veterinary clinical diagnosis capacities.

Medium and long-term needs
As part of the Horn of Africa Consultations on Food Security, Djibouti’s 2004 national poverty reduction strategy paper (Le cadre stratégique de lutte contre la pauvreté) identified key priorities for food insecurity: disaster risk management, including vulnerability mapping; sustainable water and soil management; agropastoral development; artisanal fisheries development; community development; and nutrition in food security.
The Government’s 2007 National Programme for Food Security (NPFS) addressed the sub-sectors of agriculture, livestock, fisheries and water. The 2007 National Food Security Strategy and 2009 Plan of Action (Programme National de Sécurité Alimentaire), focus on securing food supplies and reducing vulnerability to shocks (drought, flooding, inflation, regional conflict, etc.). The strategic framework, developed with support from the United States Agency for International Development and FAO, has two complementary components: (i) prevention and management of crises and (ii) structural food and nutrition security (linked to sustainable development policies, including the National Social Development Initiative, the NDIS).
The priorities of the Strategy are: (i) rationalize the management of resources; (ii) realize existing potentialities and reduce food dependence; (iii) ensure food access by vulnerable population groups; (iv) promote human resources and build capacities; and (v) promote the policy of information and impact assessment. The Plan of Action has been built around a coherent set of twelve priority programmes/projects to be submitted to donors against an overall cost estimated at USD 104 million. The programme is considered within the larger framework of the INDS and has been developed in line with the CAADP principles, thereby serving as the basis for the CAADP investment plan; work continues on the development of a CAADP Country Compact.

Emergency and recovery needs
Eritrea’s location in the Horn of Africa exposes it to extreme weather conditions, including recurrent prolonged dry spells and occasional floods. FAO’s Global Information and Early Warning System of Food and Agriculture, based on satellite imagery, indicates that the Azmera season (March to May) rains were delayed by four weeks, affecting the cropping cycle of the main crops (such as sorghum, millet, maize) and degrading pastures. The regions most affected are Debub, Gash Barka and Anseba. While data is unavailable on the impact on livestock, the cereal supply and demand balance sheet shows that Eritrea’s population of 5.2 million requires 619 000 tonnes of food (wheat, rice and coarse grains) compared with domestic availability of 282 000 tonnes. This translates into an import deficit of 337 000 tonnes.
It is surmised that poor rainfall has contributed to low levels of production and to likely food insecurity. Livestock sector support is required in the form of animal feed, vaccines, water supply and re-stocking, as well as improved water management to enhance irrigated farming.
Medium and long-term needs

The 2006 Horn of Africa Consultations on Food Security identified priority activities for tackling food insecurity in Eritrea: (i) disaster risk management and response, including vulnerability assessments; (ii) sustainable land and water management; (iii) community-based rural infrastructure and support services; (iv) access to basic education in food insecure areas; (v) safety nets and social protection schemes for the most vulnerable; (vi) nutrition and food security; (vii) livelihood diversification; and (viii) HIV/AIDS and food security. The food security policy seeks to promote domestic crop and animal production which is competitive against imports. Land and agrarian reform, agricultural marketing, rural finance, extension services, natural resources management, reform of agro-industries, and seed development are important policy concerns, as are issues of coordination and the cooperation of different government and non-governmental bodies.

An Agriculture Sector Strategy and Policy is awaiting Government endorsement while a food security concept paper has not been received positively by the Government. This might be due to the fact that the Government considers the Agriculture Development Programme (2008–2011) as the road map for achieving greater food security.
Emergency and recovery needs
In Ethiopia, as a result of the 2011 La Niña phenomenon, the food security situation has deteriorated in south and southeastern parts of the country, as well as in belg rain-dependent and sugum rain receiving areas. This has resulted in the poor performance of short-cycle crops and weakened condition of livestock, reducing food availability, with particular implications for vulnerable households.
The priorities for assistance are therefore:

  1. In pastoral or livestock keeping areas:

  • slaughter (and commercial) destocking;

  • voucher-based animal health care with an emphasis on (endo and ecto) parasite control;

  • vaccination against major transboundary diseases of economic and public health importance during the early recovery phase to rebuild livelihoods;

  • rehabilitation of livestock water points (elas until December and ponds from December to February); and

  • emergency feeding using multinutrient blocks and crop-residue/hay treatment.

  1. In cropping areas:

  • pre-positioning seeds ahead of the next rainy season; and

  • supplying root and tuber crops in densely populated areas.
Emergency Phase: July to November 2011

During the emergency phase, donor and government resources will likely focus on life-saving activities, e.g., water and sanitation, nutrition and health. There is also an urgent need to protect core breeding stock through a mixture of slaughter destocking/livestock feed and animal health interventions. Cash-for-work programmes should be supported and expanded to maintain household purchasing power as grain prices continue to rise. In order to ensure the immediate availability and quality household food supplies, support is required for the production of fast growing, nutritious and high-yielding root and tuber crops and vegetables that could be produced in kitchen gardens by women, elderly, and children.

Recovery Phase: December 2011 to December 2014

Efforts need to focus on rebuilding livestock herds and enabling farmers to strengthen production by promoting a strong animal health care system that emphasizes livestock vaccination and community-based animal health care. In addition, expanded rangeland management is needed to arrest and reverse degradation and increase range and livestock productivity. Very poor pastoralists, who have lost their livestock and would prefer to move into non-livestock-based livelihoods, should be supported to establish alternative sources of income, which will ease pressure on rangelands. In farming areas, emergency seed distribution and support to diversify crops through distribution of drought-tolerant root-tuber crops and nutritious vegetable seeds should be promoted.
Medium and long-term needs
The Policy and Investment Framework (PIF) 2010–2020 provides a strategic framework for the prioritization and planning of investments that will drive Ethiopia’s agricultural growth and development. It is designed to operationalize the CAADP Compact. The PIF is a ten-year road map for development that identifies priority areas for investment and estimates the financing needs to be provided by the Government and its development partners. It is anchored to, and aligned with, the national vision of becoming a middle income country by 2020 together with a number of key policy and strategic statements. The agriculture sector budget is expected to grow from around USD 0.7 billion in 2010–11 to as much as USD 1.7 billion per annum by the end of the PIF period. Additional investments of around USD 6.2 million are also foreseen. On this basis, the total budget over the ten-year PIF would be in the vicinity of USD 18 billion, of which around USD 2.5 billion is already committed under existing programmes and projects. Most of the additional USD 15.5 billion of funding will be required during the second half of the PIF period. The PIF identifies four main themes, each with its own Strategic Objective and major investment programmes and projects: productivity and production (USD 7.25 million) representing almost half of the projected investments; rural commercialization (USD 992 million), natural resource management (USD 2 976 million) and disaster risk management and food security (USD 3 107 million). Priority investments have been identified to be financed jointly by the Government and development partners. On the basis of Government funding 60 percent of costs and donors funding 40 percent, this indicates a contribution of around USD 9.3 billion from the Government and USD 6.2 billion from donors. A lower economic growth scenario would reduce the contributions to around USD 7.7 billion and USD 5.1 billion from the Government and donors respectively.
Emergency and recovery needs
An estimated 2.4 million people in the pastoralist and agropastoralist areas of northern and northeastern Kenya are unable to meet their basic food and water needs. It is essential that efforts be made to preserve livelihood assets and promote sustainable recovery in order to overcome the impact of the current drought conditions.

  1. Immediate needs include:

  • increasing cash into the economy through cash-for-work interventions that support soil and water conservation, water harvesting and livestock procurement;

  • protecting breeding herds through animal health support and providing mineral supplements;

  • livestock disease surveillance in drought-affected areas;

  • destocking for food and commercial livestock off-take in affected areas;

  • slaughter destocking if the situation further deteriorates; and

  • supporting the provision of water in strategic locations – through fuel subsidies for pumps and limited water trucking.

  1. Recovery phase needs:

  • livestock provision through a loan system;

  • distribution of seeds and fertilizers and promoting community-based seed multiplication in time fr the October-November short rains;

  • post-harvest handling of grains and marketing of crops and livestock; and

  • support to animal health interventions.

Medium and long-term needs
Kenya’s Medium-Term Investment Plan (MTIP) for Growth and Food Security Through Increased Agricultural Productivity and Trade: 2010–2015 is based on the country’s Agricultural Sector Development Strategy (ASDS), whose development process fulfilled specific requirements for developing the Kenya CAADP Compact. The aim of the ASDS and the MTIP is to achieve enhanced productivity in key subsectors through targeted investments. Given the central role of agriculture in Kenya’s economy, such investments would contribute to GDP growth, poverty reduction, and food security enhancement that matches national targets.

The proposed portfolio of investments requires KES 247 billion (USD 3.09 billion) over a five-year planning horizon to 2015. Investment areas aimed at “increasing productivity, commercialization and competitiveness” (USD 1 112 million) and “promoting sustainable land and natural resources management” (USD 1 297 million) together account for more than three-quarters of the budget. Targeted investments will be made according to agro-ecological zone, differentiating between high rainfall areas, semi-arid lands and arid lands. Investments for “promoting private sector participation” (USD 368 million), “increasing market access and trade” (USD 247 million), “reforming delivery of agricultural services” (USD 31 million) and “ensuring effective coordination and implementation” (USD 15 million) account for the balance. Spending will rise progressively over five years. In line with the Maputo Declaration, the Government of Kenya has committed to increasing its agricultural spending level by 30 percent by 2015, to KES 36.04 billion, for a total contribution of KES 161.22 billion; 65 percent of the budget.

Emergency and recovery needs
An estimated 3.7 million people in Somalia are currently affected by food insecurity as a result of crop failure and predicted low production in the August 2011 harvest, two regions in South Somalia have been declared in famine. Most of these have lost essential livelihood assets – harvests, livestock, etc. – as a result of the drought in the Horn of Africa. These assets constitute the sole source of income and primary basis for household food security for these families. Inaction will lead to continued large-scale population movement and hunger. Protecting the asset base of herders and assisting farmers to resume planting in time for the upcoming season will be paramount to recovering the food security and nutritional status of the most drought-affected families.
Therefore, the priority must be to:

  • restore the crop production of farmers through the distribution of appropriate agricultural inputs for the upcoming planting season;

  • safeguard the livelihoods and remaining assets of vulnerable small-scale herders through the timely provision of animal feed (fodder) to avert the starvation and sale of livestock; emergency treatment and vaccination of livestock to avert drought-related diseases; and

  • promote cash-for-work opportunities by temporarily employing members of vulnerable households as a source of much needed income to purchase food and contribute to increased resilience by rehabilitating productive infrastructure.

Medium and long-term needs
The Joint Needs Assessment carried out in 2005/06 led to the subsequent formulation of the Reconstruction and Development Plan (RDP), which outlines the current situation in Somalia. Resulting from the Horn of Africa Consultations on Food Security, the following indicative priority areas for action were identified: livelihood strategies, institutional arrangements and the enabling environment. Priorities for scaling up of potential programmes included: environmental protection and rehabilitation of degraded land; infrastructure development; and capacity building and institutional development. The consultations further highlighted the need to build partnerships between the government and different stakeholders with a view to revitalizing the appropriate institutions responsible for food security issues (agriculture, health, disaster management, etc.), both for short- and longer-term responses.
FAO, through a consultative process, has developed a five year strategy 2011–2015 to improve livelihoods and food security in Somalia. The strategy identifies eight strategic areas for action: (i) stabilizing and increasing rural family incomes; (ii) improving profitable and sustainable use of livestock resources; (iii) sustainable fishing for increased incomes of fishing communities and fishers; (iv) managing natural resources for recovery and sustainable use; (v) linking short-term humanitarian actions to longer-term development goals to build back better; (vi) learning from and building on Somali coping and survival tactics; (vii) public-private partnerships and local institutions and groups; and (viii) improving preparedness. The following cross-cutting themes have also been identified: environment; gender; youth; and drivers of conflict. The strategy will be operationalized through annual Plans of Action.

The Sudan
Emergency and recovery needs
Three transitional areas and eastern Sudan

The conflict in Abyei and South Kordofan has led to the displacement of over 190 000 people in the two areas, while the population in Blue Nile and Eastern Sudan States are still facing chronic food insecurity, increased poverty and deepening livelihoods vulnerability as a result of socio-economic, political and environmental problems. The key underlying factors are continuous political unrest, recurrent natural disasters, poor rainfall, dwindling agricultural production, limited economic opportunities and reduced livestock production and productivity.

Greater Darfur

Transitory and chronic food insecurity characterizes Greater Darfur and has greatly affected the livelihoods of the population. Owing to protracted conflict and noticeable climatic variations, the agriculture and livestock production system is unable to support the basic needs of the community. Considering the current fragile political, ethnic and socio-economic situation, the vulnerability of the population of Darfur to food insecurity and livelihoods impoverishment is likely to remain high in 2011. The provision of technical and material support to agricultural production is a priority in order to overcome the impact of protracted conflict, recurrent drought, sporadic floods, limited access to cultivable land, limited availability of agricultural inputs, rising grain prices, unstable livestock prices, poor market access, and a deteriorating natural resource base.

Main short- and medium-term priorities and needs include:

  • support to the newly displaced persons in South Kordofan, Abyei and Darfur;

  • support to returnees in Darfur and the Three Protocol Areas with agriculture and livestock productive inputs and services;

  • support to groups affected as a result of blockage of migratory routes and livestock congestion/concentration at border states (South Darfur, South Kordofan, Abyei, White Nile, Sennar and Blue Nile);

  • strengthening preparedness and response to food security and livelihoods hazards/or emergencies;

  • coordination of food security and livelihoods sector interventions; and

  • restoration and protection of environment and other natural resources.

The proposed interventions include:

  • crop-based farming interventions (including distribution of crop and vegetable seeds, agricultural tools and animal-drawn implements, promotion of local seed production and training in improved farming practices);

  • interventions to safeguard the livelihoods of herders (including improved livestock disease surveillance, vaccination campaigns, training of community animal health workers and establishment of community veterinary centres) and fishing families (including distribution of fishing kits, support to boat-building and net-braiding and training on sustainable fishing practices);

  • promotion of sustainable resource management (including establishment of nurseries, promotion of fuel-efficient stoves, establishment of fodder banks and community-based negotiation and mediation mechanisms to address natural resource management and land use); and

  • coordination of Food Security and Livelihood Sector partners.

Medium and long-term needs
The separation of South Sudan has drastic implications for the Sudan’s socio-economic and demographic features. With the independence of Southern Sudan on 9 July 2011, the oil fields located south of the 1956 international borders will fall within the borders of the new nation. This means a reduction in oil revenues channelled to the Government, with about 73 percent of the total oil revenues generated in the south. The composition of GDP in North Sudan will change and might tend towards that of the pre-oil period. The agriculture sector is expected to reassume a leading role after it had earlier retreated. The Government will return to a stronger focus on this sector through more investment and favourable policies, which will ultimately boost the supply of agricultural products. The focus of interventions in the sector will be to improve yields, particularly of cotton, wheat, sorghum, rainfed groundnut and sesame, and livestock products. In order to achieve the production targets, a set of macropolicies and sectoral policies need to be implemented. One important strategic policy to be adopted relates to the diversification of production and opening up of new markets, leading to increased growth in the agriculture sector with the ultimate goal of poverty reduction. Other areas for policy improvements include agricultural marketing, credit and livestock production and marketing. Improved infrastructure is required to provide incentives to traditional farmers to invest in improved technology and to increase production.
The authorities of North Sudan are currently preparing an Interim Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (I-PRSP), and plan to subsequently develop a full-fledged PRSP. The preparation of the draft I-PRSP document is led by a mutlisectoral Technical Committee. The authorities target to have a draft version of the I-PRSP ready for consultations with national and international stakeholders after the formal secession. Two other PRS-related committees have been formed to support the subsequent preparation of the full-fledged strategy.
The Agricultural Revival Programme (ARP) of 2007–2011 presents the development and strategies for agriculture, fisheries, food security and rural development for the whole of Sudan. The ARP prioritized its programmes in the following order: (i) basic infrastructure; (ii) raising the capacities of producers; (iii) supporting services; (iii) protection of natural resources; (iv) food security; (v) raising productivity and reducing cost of production; (vi) raising the efficiency of the agricultural public schemes; (vii) modernizing and improving the farming systems; and (viii) rural agro-industry programmes. The National Food Security Action Programme (NFSAP) has been endorsed by both the Government of Southern Sudan and the Government of National Unity. They both requested FAO to assist in convening a donor conference to fund the programme. The NFSAP is expected to be updated by the Sudan Institutional Capacity Programme: Food Security Information for Action during 2011.
In October, 2010, FAO Sudan launched the two-year Plan of Action for North Sudan. The Plan of Actionhas a budget of over USD 45 million covering 12 programme profiles for implementation in Greater Darfur, the Three Transitional Areas, the Eastern States, Northern States and Khartoum. The programme adopts a disaster risk management approach for the complex situation in Sudan. It will expand on FAO’s existing response activities into a broader focus on people’s livelihoods and resilience strategies, while building institutional capacity to prevent, protect and restore livelihoods.
South Sudan
Emergency and recovery needs
Agriculture and food security in South Sudan are predominantly constrained by: (i) insecurity and conflict, as well as the huge number of returnees; (ii) natural hazards; (iii) low production and productivity within the agriculture sector; (iv) inadequate infrastructure and markets; (v) weak food security and agriculture institutional set-up; (vi) marginalization of rural women: and (vii) limited basic social service provision.
The populations in most urgent need of assistance are IDPs and vulnerable residents affected by displacement owing to localized conflicts and attacks by the Lord’s Resistance Army, and returnees coming back to settle in the newly independent nation. South Sudan faces enormous challenges such as repeated food crises and an extremely high prevalence of hunger.
Priority interventions in South Sudan include:

  • providing livelihood support to IDPs, returnees and female-headed households through the distribution of appropriate agricultural inputs (crop seeds and hand tools, promotion of local seed production, vegetable production mainly for the dry season);

  • preventing livestock disease outbreaks and promoting alternative food production through the timely provision of fisheries equipment; emergency treatment of livestock for the most common diseases and continuous rehabilitation of cold chain facilities; and

  • enhancing the Food Security and Livelihoods Cluster coordination through coordinated food security assessments, planning and programming to ensure the needs of the most affected communities and populations are well reflected in the food security response intervention.

Medium and long-term needs

In early 2011, the Government of Southern Sudan embarked on a process of developing a broad-based and multisectoral plan for an interim post-Comprehensive Peace Agreement period of 2.5 years (July 2011 to December 2013). The Southern Sudan Development Plan (SSDP) is conceived as a first step towards achieving security, development, economic growth and poverty reduction. Against this background, the FAO Interim Assistance Plan (IAP) is embedded in the SSDP principles and highlights the respective priorities set in the areas of increasing food security and poverty alleviation, and for building the foundation for long-term agriculture development. The IAP funding needs are USD 42.78 million and are divided between two priority areas: food security and livelihood responses (USD 16.5 million) and agriculture sector recovery and rehabilitation (USD 26.3 million). The IAP is not a sectoral investment plan linked to national budget, rather, it presents several concept notes addressing specific issues under the two identified priority areas. The IAP is expected to guide both Government budget allocations and the allocation of development partner support from July 2011 until the end of 2013.

Emergency and recovery needs
With the Horn of Africa crisis currently having a moderate and localized impact in the northern Acholi and Karamoja subregions of the country, it is critical to address the needs of pastoralists in the context of a broader approach to climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction and strengthening resilience and mitigation strategies at the community and household levels.
Currently, livestock diseases, including a recent outbreak of Foot-and-Mouth disease, pose a serious threat to fragile food security conditions, and have a particular impact on pastoralist livelihoods. Interventions should be continued in support of the provision of drugs and vaccines, strengthening of laboratory and diagnostic services, and promotion of the community animal health worker network.
Additional needs to be addressed urgently (at least in some areas of the Country) include nutrition, school feeding and water management.
Medium and long-term needs

The Agriculture Sector Development Strategy and Investment Plan (DSIP): 2010/11–2014/15 has packaged its activities and investments under four programmes representing the key areas of opportunity. As in the past, the DSIP will be operationalized through the three-year Medium-Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF). New budgeting procedures introduced for 2010/11, including the requirement for signed performance contracts, are expected to lead to more performance monitoring and better budget discipline. The DSIP presents two budgets: the “ideal” budget which reflects what Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry & Fisheries would like to do if it had sufficient funds, i.e. if it had funds closer to the CAADP target of 10 percent of the national budget. The total cost of the ideal five-year programme is UGX 2.731 billion. The second budget is linked to the actual budget ceiling allocated to agriculture in the MTEF. In 2010/11, the MTEF for agriculture has been agreed at UGX 342.2 billion, with authorization to project subsequent years to rise at a further 10 percent per annum. It is on this basis that another (MTEF-related) budget has been prepared for DSIP, which is approximately 25 percent below the ideal budget, totalling UGX 2.089 billion. The subprogrammes under the MTEF related budget over five years are: production and productivity (UGX 1 253 426 million) representing 60 percent of the total budget; market access and value addition (UGX 660,419 million); enabling environment (UGX 113 738 million); and institutional strengthening (UGX 61 680 million). Previous delays in disbursement of large (donor-funded) programmes have encouraged the move towards a SWAP, which is currently ongoing and supported by various development partners.

Equally important is the support to the Government’s efforts in terms of climate change adaptation and mitigation. These include implementation of the NAPA, strengthening of the Climate Change Unit within the Ministry of Water and Environment, and strengthening district-level capacity in terms of adaptation. Support to national strategies and policies in the forestry sector (including the REDD national strategy) is also crucial.
In terms of disaster risk management, the Government has recently approved a Disaster Preparedness Strategy that will also need support for its implementation at the national and local levels.

Horn of Africa
Djibouti – Eritrea – Ethiopia – Kenya – Somalia – North Sudan – South Sudan - Uganda

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