£18m (€19.54m) has been released in UK aid to South Sudan, to be distributed to vulnerable communities suffering from famine.
Food insecurity throughout South Sudan has reached its severest level in eight years, with seven million South Sudanese residents in need of humanitarian assistance and two million facing imminent famine. The UK aid to South Sudan, which will be allocated to partner NGOs including the International Committee of the Red Cross, UNICEF and the World Food Programme, will be drawn from the central crisis reserve of the Department for International Development (DFID), which is projected to deploy a total of £91m (€98.86m) in aid funding to the region across the 2019-2020 financial year.
The new tranche of UK aid to South Sudan will provide wide ranging humanitarian support measures, including:
- Food assistance and funding to 160,000 people in desperate need of food;
- Emergency livelihood support, such as fishing equipment and seed kits, to 500,000 people living in severe poverty;
- Therapeutic nutritional support for 32,000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition; and
- Healthcare provision, particularly in areas of South Sudan which are difficult to access and deeply affected by conflict.
Andrew Stephenson, the UK’s Minister for Africa, said: “South Sudan is a humanitarian catastrophe and vulnerable people face the daily threat of starvation. I have seen first hand that UK aid is saving lives and today’s step up in support will deliver urgently needed food, water and health services to hundreds of thousands of people. We call on the government of South Sudan to immediately lift all humanitarian access restrictions and to commit more resources to provide basic services such as health and education to give people hope for the future. With just three months until the formation of the transitional government, time is running out. Significant effort and compromise are required to fully implement the peace agreement.”