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Somali presidential envoy visits drought-stricken Dolow, urges humanitarian intervention

Mohammed Dhaysane
Tuesday June 21, 2022

A humanitarian delegation led by the Somali president's special envoy for the drought response on Monday visited Dolow, one of the worst drought-stricken towns in the country, to see the humanitarian crisis and famine unfolding in the Gedol region.

Abdirahman Abdishakur Warsame met with the United Nations deputy representative to Somalia and the UN humanitarian coordinator for the country during his visit.

Dolow, which currently hosts one of the largest groups of internally displaced persons, is witnessing an influx people fleeing from the drought in search of food, water and better lives but now finding themselves living in makeshift homes without receiving any aid so far.

Warsame, who spoke to Anadolu Agency at an internally displaced persons (IDP) camp in Dolow, said Somalia and the international community must work together to avert a famine and to help the families affected by the drought and called for urgent humanitarian intervention.

"I’ve been traveling to different places and towns to see the effect that the drought has had on people. A week ago, I visited Buulabarde.

Before that, Baidoa, and now I am in Dolow to see the situation of affected people here," he said.

Warsame said his responsibility is to organize and work with humanitarians to lift any restrictions.

He said what he has seen at IDP camps in Dolow is a humanitarian crisis at its worst and it is time to act to avoid famine.

Adam Abdelmoula, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Somalia, told Anadolu Agency that Somalia is seeing its worst drought in recent memory.

"The people who are living here now came in recent days and weeks and have since been living without humanitarian assistance,” he said.

Abdelmoula said eight districts in Somalia are now facing famine-like conditions and 366,000 people in the country will die by September if humanitarian assistance does not scale up as soon as possible.

He noted that 7.1 million Somalis -- nearly half the country’s population -- are in need of humanitarian assistance and 1.5 million children are severely malnourished.

"If we don't act now, thousands will die, and any delay is not an option to immediately save lives," he told Anadolu Agency.

Authorities in Dolow said the camps have become overcrowded by the recent influx of those who fled from drought mostly from the Bay, Bakol and Gedol regions.

"We are running out of public lands, which shows the severity of the situation. We have set up three large IDP camps within 30 days. These people need help," Bashir Hassan Abdullahi, the mayor of Dolow, told Anadolu Agency.


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