•Picture: Claudia Blume/MSF•
Displaced people in the Tomping camp are crowded into low-lying parts of a UN compound prone to flooding.
I just received the shocking report of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan, UNMISS’s indifference to the conditions of the about 21,000 displaced people living in a flood-prone part of a UN peacekeeping base in the capital Juba, where they are exposed to waterborne diseases and potential epidemics from the international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontièrest (MSF). The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) have refused to improve living conditions of these displaced people.
The displaced people in the Tomping camp are crowded into low-lying parts of a UN compound prone to flooding. So many diseases like Diarrheal diseases, respiratory infections, and skin diseases have been reported due to the serious sanitary problems being encountered. People are living in natural drainage channels because there is no other space. And the rains, which will last
the better part of six months, are becoming heavier. If nothing is done right now, the already horrific consequences could become fatal.
During the first rainfall of the season, 150 latrines in Tomping collapsed, their contents mixing with floodwater. Prior to that there were still far too few latrines in the camp, with one per 65 persons. The minimum standard in emergency humanitarian settings is one latrine for 20 persons.
A UN plan to establish an alternative site for the displaced has been mired in implementation delays and is now unrealistic because of the onset of rains.
Despite repeated requests from humanitarian organizations,
UNMISS is taking no action in Tomping to improve the chances of survival.
Is the UN not commited to
meeting the needs of South Sudan’s most vulnerable people, hundreds of thousands of whom have been displaced by conflict
since December 2013?