- UNHCR, the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), and partners are preparing for a possible surge in refugee arrivals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and South Sudan due to reports of deteriorating security conditions in both countries, along with increased Ebola cases in eastern DRC.
Integrated Phase Classification (IPC) analysis for January to March 2019 indicated that 475,200 people were facing severe food insecurity in the Karamoja and Teso regions, with food security expected to continue to deteriorate through June.
A total of 2,013 children (987 boys, 1,026 girls) were admitted for treatment of severe acute malnutrition in refugee districts and in Karamoja.
With UNICEF support, over 57,000 children (27,329 boys and 29,932 girls) were immunized against measles in refugee-hosting districts.
A total of 1,063 unaccompanied and separated refugee children (551 boys and 512 girls) in alternative-care placements in West Nile benefitted from follow-up visits, placements, and referrals by UNICEF and partners.
Situation Overview and Humanitarian Needs
Situation of refugees: Uganda continues to host 1,256,729 refugees and asylum seekers, with approximately 815,831 individuals from South Sudan, 339,476 from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), 39,647 from Burundi, and 29,170 from Somalia, according to UNHCR and the OPM. This year, joint border monitoring reports by UNHCR and OPM have documented the arrival of more than 33,000 new refugees, most of whom are from either South Sudan (15,000) or DRC (16,500).
Following recent reports of refugees voluntarily returning to South Sudan, UNHCR confirmed that despite the signing of the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS) on 11 September 2018, the humanitarian situation in the country remains grave. By the end of 2018, nearly 1.87 million South Sudanese were internally displaced, while another 5.7 million needed life-saving assistance. Of the spontaneous refugee returnees to South Sudan who have been monitored by humanitarian actors, 85 per cent are reported to be living in IDP-like conditions. Many are unable to return to their places of origin or recover property or land they left behind.1 This suggests that the returns to South Sudan may be temporary. Going forward, UNHCR, OPM, and partners are preparing for a possible surge in refugee arrivals from the Equatoria region of South Sudan in the wake of reports of deteriorating security conditions. A similar surge in refugee arrivals from eastern DRC due to security concerns and Ebola may also occur in the upcoming months.
The Ministry of Health (MoH), with support from UNICEF and partners, organized annual planning meetings for all districts, including those hosting refugees, to support the development of integrated district health plans responsive to the needs of both refugees and host populations and inclusive of support of all development partners operating at decentralized level.
The plans for refugee hosting districts are informed by the Health Sector Refugee Response Plan launched in January 2019 and are intended to provide a comprehensive picture of needs, available support and remaining gaps in health sector at the district level. These plans will bridge humanitarian and development nexus in the refugee hosting districts and are expected to contribute to the national objective of improving the health status of host communities and refugees through building a resilient health system that guarantees sustainable and equitable access to essential health services.