Healthcare good but food scarcity reported in South Kordofan capital

Sorghum cultivated in Sudan (File photo: Dabanga)

The city of Kadugli in South Kordofan is witnessing a severe scarcity of sorghum, the main food source for the population. The prices of basic commodities are increasing. The healthcare in the city is “going well”.

“There is hardly any sorghum available at the city’s markets and neighbouring areas,” a listener reported Dabanga from Kadugli yesterday.

“Basic commodities are fairly available in the markets, but prices are high and are steadily increasing,” he added. “As for mobile phones, the prices doubled. We now pay SDG90,000* to SDG120,000 for a telephone, instead of SDG50,000 a month ago.”

He pointed out that most of the goods come from South Sudan through the El Na’aam Market at the border.

The area of Dalami, northeast of Kadugli, is also experiencing a severe shortage of sorghum, journalist Abdelrahim Kunda told Dabanga earlier this month. The market is reportedly “devoid of anything for sale.” A large number of the town’s residents complained that they had been without food for two days.  

The harvest of sorghum in Dalami was extremely poor last year due to the lack of rain, the destruction of crops by locusts and birds, delayed agricultural funding, and the “sheer unpredictable security situation,” said Kunda. 

In September last year, Dabanga reported that merchants at the markets of South Kordofan resorted to barter trade and South Sudanese currency, because of the persisting liquidity crisis in the state.

Aid provision

As for the many displaced sheltering in the city, the source explained that humanitarian organisations replaced the in-kind assistance they used to provide to them with cash assistance in October last year.

“The monthly amount provided to one person is about SDG75,000,” he said, and explained that cash amounts were initially distributed to those who had fled war zones in West and North Kordofan, and Khartoum. “The distribution now covers large segments of society.”

Healthcare in the city is “going well”, he added. “The intervention of health organisations is great. The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is also helping out. The latest convoy with medical aid arrived in November. Most of the medicines are currently provided by the UN Interim Security Force in Abyei (UNISFA).”

* The middle rate of the US Dollar at the Faisal Islamic Bank yesterday amounted to SDG1,144. The greenback was selling for SDG1,200 at the parallel market on February 5.