Washington, May 22, 2012
The U.S. government has announced it will provide emergency relief to help people affected by food scarcity and conflict in South Sudan. The $30 million contribution will be made through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and delivered through the U.N. World Food Programme (WFP).
The assistance is in response to the deteriorating humanitarian situation in South Sudan, where an estimated 1 million people are severely food-insecure as the result of a cereal deficit, high food prices and intercommunal conflict.
“This generous contribution from the U.S. government comes at a critical time when WFP is expanding its operation to respond to growing humanitarian needs,” said Chris Nikoi, WFP’s country director for South Sudan, according to a USAID news release.
“At the same time, we are preparing for the rapidly approaching rainy season, so we are extremely grateful to receive this crucial support,” Nikoi said.
Because of South Sudan’s poor road network, about 60 percent of the country will become inaccessible during the rainy season. This contribution helps WFP complete prepositioning of much-needed commodities across South Sudan, where roads will soon become impassable.
“This contribution from the American people is part of the U.S. government’s continuing support for the most vulnerable people in South Sudan, who are some of the most in need of food assistance to sustain them as they work to rebuild their lives,” said USAID/South Sudan Mission Director Kevin Mullally.
The U.S. government is the largest supporter of WFP’s operation in South Sudan and, including this donation, has contributed more than $110 million in 2012 to WFP’s emergency operation in the country.