Japan provides assistance to displaced people in Ethiopia

The Embassy of Japan in Ethiopia has contributed $2.5 million to UN Children’s Fund Ethiopia to help alleviate the water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) needs of some 400,000-people displaced by droughts and ethnic conflicts.

Government latest report shows that currently there are over 2.3 million displaced people in Ethiopia mainly due to ethnic violence. In addition, over the past few weeks, Oromia Region’s towns surrounding Addis Ababa such as Legetaffo, Sululta, and Sebeta, have launched aggressive demolition of residential houses displacing thousands of households claiming that the people have settled on Oromia land illegally.

UNICEF will use the Japanese funds over 12 months to provide lifesaving WASH services to internally displaced populations (IDPs) and host communities in all regions of Ethiopia, with priority given to SNNP, Oromia, and Somali regions.

The press statement from UNICEF indicated that it will use the grant to procure emergency supplies such as jerry cans, soap, SaTo toilet pans and life-saving activities such water trucking and construction of sanitation facilities and sustainable water infrastructure to reduce dependency on water trucking.

“This contribution from Japan could not have come at a better time when we are seeking resources to support the large number of IDPs,” said UNICEF Representative in Ethiopia Gillian Mellsop. “Conditions in the IDP sites remain dire, with the brunt of suffering borne by children and women. We are grateful for this contribution, which will enable us to reach nearly half a million people. The needs, however, remain large while the funding, regrettably, is limited.”

As of October 2018, 2.9 million people, including 1.5 million children, had been displaced in Ethiopia.

Japan’s financial contribution will enable UNICEF to supply safe water to 332,800 IDPs and 83,200 members of host communities. Some 220,000 children are set to benefit; and provide sanitation and hygiene services to 172,800 IDPs and 43,200 members of the host communities. This intervention will benefit 114,000 children.

UNICEF Ethiopia’s total humanitarian appeal for children for 2019 is pegged at US$ 124.1 million and aims to reach 3.7 million people, including two million children.