650,000 people affected by floods in Sudan – UN

About 650,000 people have been affected by flash floods caused by heavy rains that hit Sudan in mid-July, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said.

Sudan’s Humanitarian Aid Commission (HAC) was cited to have reported that 650,000 people had been affected by floods in 17 out of Sudan’s 18 states.

More than 111,000 houses were either destroyed or damaged.

Floods also destroyed 1,700 ha (4,200 acres) of agricultural land, 179 public facilities (schools, health centres and government offices), 359 shops and warehouses and killed 5,500 head of livestock,’’ the UN agency said in a report.

More than 110,000 people have been affected by floods in the first week of September alone, the OCHA said

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It added that nearly 43 per cent of those 650,000 are in the states of Khartoum, North Darfur and Sennar.

“The situation could deteriorate over the coming days, as heavy rains forecast in Ethiopia and several parts of Sudan will likely cause a further increase in water levels in the Blue Nile, leading to more flooding and destruction,’’ the report added.

HAC warned that more flood-related damages are anticipated in the
coming few days in River Nile and Northern states.

It said, “The most urgent needs are shelter, non-food items, and WASH services. Readiness to respond to health outbreaks as a result of floods and vector-borne diseases is urgent. More than 170,000 flood-affected Sudanese people and refugees are receiving non-food items in Darfur.

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“Ahead of the rainy season, stocks were pre-positioned to facilitate aid delivery. Stocks were prepositioned for a full range of humanitarian response activities – not only for potential flood response – for 250,000 people. This number has now been revised to 750,000 people
affected, out of which 650,000 have been affected to date. Sectors are reporting that stocks are running low or are depleted given the scale of the floods”

Since mid-July, Sudan has been experiencing an unusual level of heavy rains, which intensified over the last week.

This has prompted the government to declare a three-month state of emergency in the country.

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