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Six children starve to death in Kalma camp as flooding continues across Darfur

August 14 - 2022 KALMA CAMP
Displaced children at Zamzam camp in North Darfur, 2011 (File photo: Olivier Chassot / UNAMID)
Displaced children at Zamzam camp in North Darfur, 2011 (File photo: Olivier Chassot / UNAMID)

Six children have reportedly have died and a further 2,322 have been reported as malnourished in Kalma camp for the displaced in South Darfur over the last two weeks. Heavy rainfall continues across Darfur destroying more homes and infrastructure.

Sheikh Ishag Mohamed, head of Kalma camp, told Radio Dabanga that of the 2,322 children, 767 are severely malnourished and 30 others are permanently confined to camp health centres in the camp.

He said the reason for this rise in child malnourishment is the World Food Programme (WFP) recent suspension of support to a large number of displaced people along with their decision to hand out money instead of food.

Shortage of food

In El Fasher, the capital of North Darfur, displaced people from several nearby camps complained of a severe shortage of food on Tuesday, which they say, is compounding rising child malnutrition.

Mohamed Abdallah, head of nearby Zamzam camp, said the delayed arrival of financial support from international organizations, along with difficulties accessing clean drinking water, were behind the spike in malnutrition. He has called on the government to intervene and help address the challenges facing the camps.

Ahmed Adam, director of El Fasher locality, said their had been renewed efforts to provide food and communicate with international organizations so that they can fulfil their obligations to displaced people.

More rain hits South Darfur

Sheikh Ishag Mohamed also told Radio Dabanga that torrential rain on Wednesday and Thursday destroyed 7,490 homes in Kalma camp, affecting around 20,000 families. Most of those affected are without shelter or food, Mohamed said. He has appealed to the government and other humanitarian organizations for help.

Over the past two weeks, heavy rainfall has sparked flash flooding across several Sudanese states.

Torrential rain also swept through the town of Ed El Fursan, in South Darfur, during the early hours of Thursday morning. Witnesses told Radio Dabanga that waters from the river Wadi Kaya submerged most of the town exceeding the level of the local dam. People who spoke with Sudanese media expressed fear that flooding will lead to a deterioration in hygiene levels and the collapse of the city’s sewage system.

Floods also swept through the village of Um Zeifa in South Darfur. People from the village told Radio Dabanga that conditions are critical and that many are without shelter.

An emergency meeting Room has been called in South Darfur headed by Deputy Governor Bashir Mursal while Civil Defence and Health Department have been directed to offer support in the affected areas.


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