DURBAN - Somalia has been given donor funding by the US government worth nearly $199 million (about R2.9 billion).
The US government said, the humanitarian assistance was for the people of Somalia who have faced decades of chronic food insecurity, violence, and cycles of drought and flooding, the impacts of which had been compounded by desert locusts and the Covid-19 pandemic.
The additional funding, through the US Agency for International Development (USAid) and the US Department of State, increased to date humanitarian assistance for the people of Somalia to more than $408m for the current financial year.
USAid said the assistance would help many of the nearly six million people of Somalia in need of humanitarian aid, including three million displaced people inside Somalia as well as nearly 500 000 Somali refugees in Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya.
The funding would provide emergency food and nutrition assistance, safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene, shelter, protection, education and health care, as well as logistics and other support, in the face of worsening environmental, humanitarian and conflict-related challenges.
“The United States is the largest single donor of humanitarian aid in Somalia and for Somali refugees in the region, and we welcome efforts by the United Nations to draw attention to the plight of the people of Somalia,” department spokesperson Ned Price said.
“We remain concerned about the continuing increase in humanitarian needs, and we urge other donors to contribute to the international response and provide the support needed to save lives.”