Operation Lifeline Sudan: May-1997 Report

Operation Lifeline Sudan: May-1997 Report



OLS is a consortium of UN and non-government agencies working with the people of southern Sudan, whose survival, protection and development is jeopardized by the complex emergency and chronic underdevelopment. In striving to meet the needs of the southern Sudanese, OLS: saves lives, promotes self-reliance, protects peopleís safety and dignity and enables them to invest in their future. - OLS Southern Sector mission statement, January 1997


MAY 1997


OLS programmes update:

Emergency relief and


................ 2 Household Food Security


............. 2

Health and Nutrition


..................... 3

Education/Children in Especially Difficult Circumstances

.................................. 4

Gender and


.......................... 4

Capacity Building


.......................... 5



......................................... 5

General Situation:



.......................................... 6 Flight



.............. 8

List of


....................................... 10

Map of southern Sudan

PO Box 44145, Nairobi, Kenya, Tel: (254-2) 622410, Fax: (254-2) 215296,


OLS Programmes Update

Emergency relief and shelter

As part of continuing relief assistance programmes to vulnerable groups in Yei and Kajo Keji Counties, Eastern Equatoria, UNICEF began a seed swap programme with the local community, bartering locally produced grain for soap, salt and blankets. NGOs continued to bring medical, water-related and food security assistance, with OXFAM supporting household food security programmes, ADRA assisting with non-food items, Aktion Afrika Hilfe (AAH) operating primary health care programmes, International Aid Sweden (IAS) assisting with water-related needs and non-OLS NGOs running the local hospitals.

UNICEF and AAH conducted measles vaccination in Yei County with a total of 931 children under five and 1,124 children over five immunized. AAH also established seven primary health care units on the Kaya-Yei and Yei-Lainya roads with the support of UNICEF. Household food security activities progressed, with heavy rains benefiting crops. Fresh maize and groundnuts were reported to be appearing in the local market. Some areas, however, still reported insufficient inputs for cultivating needs due to the continuing influx of returnees from northern Uganda. The UNICEF project officer stationed in Yei, also distributed 24 education and five carpentry kits to the area headmaster for use in the 25 local schools. It was reported on 16 May, that almost all refugees had left Yei town for the surrounding villages, although new Sudanese returnees were still arriving from northern Uganda.

Household Food Security (HFS)

Seeds and tools deliveries

UNICEF deliveries of seeds and tools began after flight clearances were received on 15 May, but were again disrupted when the UNICEF-contracted Buffalo aircraft (call sign UNB4) was damaged in Aburoc, Upper Nile (see page 8). Deliveries had taken place to Madhol, Bahr el Ghazal, and to Wichok and Nhialdiu, Upper Nile. Approximately 150 metric tonnes of seeds and tools are to be delivered to areas in Bahr el Ghazal, Upper Nile and Jonglei. Targeted locations were selected based on vulnerability assessments conducted by UNICEF field staff throughout the year. The delays in delivery have caused concern, as rapid distribution during the planting season is essential. Successful planting is still possible if seeds and tools are delivered by the end of May or in early June.

Poultry project reviewed

A UNICEF small-livestock officer recently visited Western Equatoria to assess the impact of a UNICEF/OXFAM training of Community Poultry Extension Workers (CPEWs) that took place in May and June 1996. The training, attended by 50 people from 13 towns in Mundri County, taught methods of improving poultry production and treatment, including the improvement of livestock housing and management. On observation, the UNICEF livestock officer reported that the programme was continuing despite insecurity in the county during the last year. Many of the CPEWs were successful in working with local farmers to improve livestock management. The main emphasis of the project has been improved housing for the poultry, improved feeding methods, identification and treatment of disease, administration of drugs when needed, and the sale of drugs on a partial cost recovery basis. Extension of the programme was also successful, with 21 active CPEWs recruiting 179 poultry owners into the programme.

For further updates on food security activities of OLS NGOs, see the NGO Updates on pages 5-6.

Health and Nutrition

Acute gastroenteritis reported in Eastern Equatoria

An outbreak of acute gastroenteritis (severe diarrhoeal disease) was ongoing throughout the month in Keyala and surrounding towns in Eastern Equatoria. Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) and the SRRA led treatment efforts, with support UNICEF, HealthNet International (HNI) and the International Rescue Committee (IRC). UNICEF and NCA supplied the area with medicines, plastic sheeting, jerrycans, soap and other items to assist with the treatment and prevention. NCA teams also intensified health education and community mobilization and ran a training for village volunteers to assist with oral rehydration therapy and containing the outbreak. Joint efforts resulted in reduced case numbers by the end of the month and reports that the outbreak was under control.

Cases of severe diarrhoea were also identified in Natinga, with three deaths confirmed by OLS NGO Sudan Medical Care (SMC). However, a UNICEF health officer visited the area and reported that the situation was not serious. Additional cases of watery diarrhoea were reported by SMC medical personnel in Narus, Khorjeep and Napotpot. UNICEF supplied blankets, mosquito nets, plastic sheeting, basins, buckets, cups and medicines to assist with emergency treatment.

Malnutrition reported in Bahr el Ghazal

WFP reported high levels of malnutrition in Bahr el Ghazal following a joint assessment with Medecins sans Frontieres (MSF)-Belgium late last month. Some 103mt of food and UNICEF-purchased high protein biscuits had been delivered by WFP to Thiek Thou, but relief interventions stopped on 24 April due to insecurity. WFP reported that the ration would be sufficient for 30 days but that the situation would worsen unless further assistance could be provided after that time. Continued deliveries were finally possible near the end of May, with 72mt being delivered to Thiek Thou and nearby Madhol. Food deliveries have been taking place through the use of a WFP-contracted Buffalo aircraft (cargo capacity of 7.5mt), as the larger C-130 Hercules aircraft (cargo capacity of 16.2mt) has been denied flight clearance to Equatoria and Bahr el Ghazal for the month. The area is characterized by internal displacement due to insecurity and continues to be a priority for food, seeds, tools and supplementary feeding. Cholera outbreak in Lokichokio A serious outbreak of cholera was reported during May in Lokichokio, northern Kenya, which is the base for OLS operations into southern Sudan and home to over 200 relief workers per night. A treatment centre was established by the Kenyan Ministry of Health and African Inland Church (AIC), who were spearheading treatment efforts. UNICEF, MSF-Belgium and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) gave support with medicines and other materials. The promotion of health education took place in the town and emergency sanitation measures were implemented within the OLS camp. On 25 May, the UNICEF health officer in Lokichokio reported that the outbreak seemed to be under control.

For further updates on health activities of OLS NGOs, see the NGO Updates on pages 5-6.

Education/Children in Especially Difficult Circumstances (CEDC)

Teacher training in Equatoria

A three-month training has begun for 61 teachers in New Cush, Eastern Equatoria, facilitated by Radda Barnen, UNICEF and SRRA. Forty-two of the trainees are former unaccompanied minors who completed schooling in Kakuma refugee camp, northern Kenya. They plan to teach in their home areas of Bor, Jonglei and Bahr el Ghazal upon completion of the training. Nineteen of the trainees are already teaching in schools in Eastern Equatoria. Radda Barnen is supporting the construction of a training centre in New Cush to facilitate similar training courses in the future.

Also in Eastern Equatoria, a Level I training course run by IAS is taking place for 60 teachers in Bamurye and a supervisors training run by NCA is being held for 65 school supervisors and head teachers in Ikotos. In Western Equatoria, a Level III course is being held by MRDA for 40 teachers in Maridi.

For further updates on education or CEDC activities of OLS NGOs, see the NGO Updates on pages 5-6.


A workshop focused on gender policy and analysis was held on 18-22 May in New Cush, Eastern Equatoria, targeting key members of the Sudan Peopleís Liberation Movement (SPLM) civil society such as planners, policy makers and key administrators. The 32 participants (including five women) were senior SRRA officials from the county and regional levels. The workshop was linked to a management and Development Education Leadership Teams in Action (DELTA) training course organized by SRRA and UNICEF. When the workshop began, the main concern expressed by participants was that gender and development concepts presented would be at odds with cultural norms and values. However, following the course, participants commented that the concept of gender should not create a division between male and female, but rather compliment the different roles that each play in society. The workshop participants also developed a plan of action regarding how to incorporate gender concerns into their daily activities.

Capacity Building

A second group of community leaders from SPLM-administered areas graduated on 22 May, following a 13 week, two-part community development course held in New Cush. Course content included concepts of participatory community development, participatory rural appraisal techniques (such as inclusive information gathering and baseline survey methods), and participatory project planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. All SRRA county/camp secretaries and most of the local commissioners have now been training in these workshops.

NGO updates

IRC In Ganyliel, Upper Nile, community health workers in IRCís training programme are in week eight of their practical training at primary health care centres/units. The students have taken three practical assessments and will take the final assessment in early June. The IRC mobile team flew to Maiwut, Upper Nile, to a complete training of health workers that began in April. In Billing, the nine-month community health worker and hospital auxiliary nurse training course is ongoing.


Barnen Radda Barnen began support for an SRRA initiated training programme in New Cush. The one-week training of trainers (TOT) for six facilitators (five male, one female), preceded a larger training which began on 26 May for 51 participants. The training is part of a SRRA/UNICEF/Radda Barnen support programme for the reintegration of reunified minors and to ensure the provision of quality education to children in the region. Radda Barnen also completed two three- month training courses in Akot and Leer. A total of 397 teachers were trained (379 male, 16 female) in school administration and management, TOT methodologies, and general subject content and methodology. Of those trained in TOT, 22 were prepared to supervise the training of recent teacher graduates. In Rumbek and Yirol, Radda Barnen conducted follow-up activities for 115 of the 218 children reunified at the end of 1996. They report that most of the children are settling and adjusting well.

WVI World Vision International (WVI) reports that 10 oxen were training for future ox-ploughing activities in Nabagok, Tonj County. The programme was reported to be widely accepted in the area and more farmers were bringing their oxen to be trained. Fifty metric tonnes of vegetable seeds were distributed to farmers as land preparation for demonstration plots with the oxen. WVI also reports that 59 village volunteers were trained in guinea worm prevention on 8-11 May in Akop Payam, Tonj County. The course included an explanation of the guinea worm cycle, prevention techniques (including the use of filter cloth), and first aid treatment for guinea worm wounds. Volunteers were given training materials and first aid kits for distribution in surrounding villages.

Please send NGO updates to the UNICEF/OLS reports officer (fax:215296) by Monday of the last week of each month.

Security Update 3 May - Six bombs were dropped on Akot, followed by another three the next day. An unexploded bomb landed near the airstrip, preventing relief flights to the town. No casualties were reported in either incident. The bomb had not been removed by the end of the month.

9 May - The OLS Security Officer flew to Paluer to assess the situation of NGOs on the ground after receiving a report that the town was under attack. On arrival, he met four staff of OLS NGO ACROSS and one non-OLS staff member who had been advised by local authorities that it was not safe to relocate from Paluer in their vehicles due to mined roads. The staff were relocated safely by air to Lokichokio.

9 May - Eight staff of MSF-Belgium and one SCF-UK staff member were relocated from Mapel to Lokichokio due to heavy fighting reported in Tonj, east of Mapel. They relocated as a precautionary measure on the advice of SRRA counterparts.

10 May - More than two dozen armed men entered the CARE and International Medical Corps (IMC) compounds in Tambura, Western Equatoria, and forcibly commandeered CAREís lorry and IMCís pick-up truck. Early the next morning, the men departed from the area with the NGO vehicles. Along the way, an additional CARE truck ó performing road repairs north of the town ó was intercepted and also commandeered. The OLS Security Officer arrived in Tambura on the morning of 11 May and met with local authorities regarding the incident. Seven staff of IMC, CARE, UNICEF and SRRA were relocated to Lokichokio, as well as two consultant staff from the Centers for Disease Control, who were in nearby Ezo working with the NGOs to survey a serious problem with trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness). Four NGO staff were left in Tambura and relocated to Lokichokio on 15 May.

10 May - Two staff of the OLS NGO Veterinaires sans Frontieres (VSF)-Belgium relocated by foot from Mading to Akobo due to insecurity caused by cattle raiding nearby. The staff made the 11-hour journey accompanied by local counterparts.

11 May - Two Save the Children Fund (SCF)-UK staff were relocated to Lokichokio from Acumcum and three from Panthou as a result of reported fighting in the Warrap and Gogrial areas. The precautionary relocation involved a successful night landing in Lokichokio. 15 May - MSF-Belgium staff in Akobo, together with the VSF-Belgium staff that arrived on 10 May, were relocated to Lokichokio accompanied by the OLS Security Officer. They plan to re-evaluate the security of the location before resuming activities. Akobo has been an area of frequent insecurity, with NGO staff relocated numerous times during the past year.

15 May - A MSF-Belgium vehicle traveling from Maridi to Moyo was stopped by armed men en route to meet an OLS flight. Two of the four passengers were reportedly robbed of all their possessions and the vehicleís radio was looted. Three days earlier, an American Rescue Committee (ARC) vehicle was robbed at the same location.

16 May - WFP staff reported that two bombs were dropped on Narus. The team reported no casualties or damage.

24 May - Six bombs were dropped on Thiet, Lakes province, with one unexploded bomb landing near the WVI compound. No casualties were reported but WVI staff temporarily moved to Nabagok as a precaution the same day. Thiet was again reported bombed on 27 May. There was no information on casualties or damage.

24 May - Two bandits fired shots at an Intereact truck on the road 20km south of Lokichokio. There were no casualties.

28 May - WFP staff relocated from Agaigai after they were informed of fighting in a nearby town. The OLS Security Officer declared the area safe again for relief activities on 30 May.

30 May - WVI staff report that bombs were again dropped on Thiet. This was the third bombing of the town since 24 May.

31 May - Seven staff of MEDAIR in Atar relocated to Lokichokio on the advice of local SRRA authorities due to insecurity near the area.

Security incidents in northern Uganda 11 May - A vehicle belonging to the African Inland Church (AIC), a non-OLS agency, was ambushed between Aru and Agoro, Eastern Equatoria. During the ambush, two AIC staff were killed and two other passengers were wounded. The wounded were flown for treatment to a hospital in Gulu. Of the remaining passengers, three SRRA staff fled into the bush and five others traveled to Parajok, where they were treated for minor injuries.

27 May - The OLS Security Officer in Lokichokio received a report that Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) and Action Contre la Faim (ACF) personnel in Kitgum, northern Uganda, required emergency relocation due to fighting outside the town. After contacting ACF staff, who are acting as the security focal point for OLS staff in Kitgum, it was reported that vehicles were not allowed to leave the town that day, but that ACF would coordinate security measures with OLS staff and remain in contact with Lokichokio. Later in the day, it was reported that military activity had been reduced.

Three days earlier, a landmine exploded 15km from Kitgum, killing two people. Unconfirmed reports of small arms fire on the road, three kilometres from the town, were also received on 23 May. Ugandan authorities were scheduled to hold a meeting in Kitgum with NGOs regarding the incidents.


OLS received clearance from the Government of Sudan for relief flights from Lokichokio to 99 airstrips in southern Sudan during May 1997. The following exceptions were received on 15 May in a letter from the Humanitarian Aid Commission (HAC) in Khartoum:

ï Bahr el Ghazal with the exception of:- Tonj, Rumbek, Malual Akon, Akak and Warrap. Mayen Abun and Akon were cleared if accessed from within Sudan. ï Equatoria with the exception of:- Loronyo, Yei, Maridi, Mundri, Yambio and Parajok. ï Upper Nile with the exception of:- Panyagor, Pochalla, Yomciir and Kongor. ï The Hercules C-130 aircraft was not cleared to operate in Equatoria and Bahr el Ghazal.

Ten-day flight suspension

On 6 May, OLS relief flights into southern Sudan were halted due to repeated denial of flight clearance by the Juba flight control tower. On 4 May, a WFP-contracted Buffalo aircraft (UNB5) was not cleared by the Juba control tower to fly to Madhol. The tower told the pilot that the Buffalo did not have flight clearance for the month of May. On 5 May, the Juba tower directed the WFP-contracted C-130 Hercules aircraft not to enter Sudan airspace as it did not have a clearance number. On 6 May, the Juba tower informed the UNICEF-contracted Buffalo (UNB4) and two ECHO-contracted Caravans (ECHO 7 and ECHO 8) that they were not cleared to enter Sudan airspace. The three aircraft returned to Lokichokio and flights into southern Sudan were halted until clearance was received on 15 May.

The OLS fleet of aircraft make an average of 90 relief flights per week to deliver relief supplies to civilians in both Government and SPLA-held areas. The flight suspension seriously disrupted humanitarian efforts in southern Sudan. In particular, crucial seeds and tools deliveries were delayed, hampering timely planting, now that the rainy season has begun (see page 2).

Buffalo aircraft damaged in Aburoc

A UNICEF-chartered Buffalo aircraft (call sign UNB4) was damaged on 23 May when it slid during take-off after delivering seeds and tools to Aburoc. The aircraft company Trident, owners of the damaged Buffalo, reported that the slippery runway caused the plane to turn during the attempted take-off, resulting in damage to the propeller and a wing tip. There were no injuries as a result of the accident.

OLS pilot returns to Nairobi

Air Kenya employee and pilot of the UNICEF-chartered Twin Otter aircraft, Richard Stewart, returned to Nairobi on 2 May after being held for questioning by the Sudan Government for seven weeks. Mr Stewart and the aircraft were detained in Bor on 14-20 March after they landed to deliver 20kg of spare parts for a UNICEF water project. Sudan Government authorities in Bor said that flight clearance for the aircraft had not yet reached them. A few days later, the Sudan Government issued a statement in Khartoum alleging that Mr Stewart was carrying "important documents" that would be passed on to "other parties". When the situation was not immediately resolved, the Khartoum-based UN Coordinator for Emergency Relief Operations in Sudan and the Nairobi-based OLS Coordinator traveled to Bor to discuss the matter with local authorities. On 20 March, the aircraft, a UNICEF staff member in Bor and the co-pilot were allowed to return to Lokichokio, while Mr Stewart flew with the UN officials to Khartoum for further questioning. He remained in Khartoum for six weeks.

The following aircraft were available during the month of May:

Aircraft Type Cargo Capacity Contracted by Status













* Although the C-130 was cleared for flights into Upper Nile, an attempt to fly relief food to Paliau was halted by the Juba control tower on 30 May.

List of Abbreviations

AAH Aktion Afrika Hilfe

ACROSS Association of Christian Resource Organizations Serving Sudan

ADRA Adventist Development and Relief Agency

AIC African Inland Church

ACF Action Contre la Faim

ANV Association of Napata Volunteers

CAHW community animal health worker

CARE Cooperative for American Relief Everywhere

CCM Comitato Collaborazione Medica

CEDC children in especially difficult circumstances

CHW community health worker

CIDA Canadian International Development Agency

CMA Christian Mission Aid

COSV Coordinating Committee for Voluntary Service

CRRS Cush Relief and Rehabilitation Society

CRS Catholic Relief Services

DOT Diocese of Torit

ECHO European Community Humanitarian Office

EPI expanded programme of immunization

FEWS Famine Early Warning System

FFW food for work

FRRA Fashoda Relief and Rehabilitation Association

GAA German Agro Action

GOS Government of Sudan

HHFS household food security

IARA Islamic African Relief Agency

ICRC International Committee of the Red Cross

ICRI International Child Research Institute

IMC International Medical Corps

IRC International Rescue Committee

IRL Institute of Regional Languages

MDM Medecins du Monde

MEDIC Medical Emergency Development International Committee

MRDA Mundri Relief and Development Association

MSF Medecins sans Frontieres

MT metric tonnes

NCA Norwegian Church Aid

NGO non-governmental organization

NPA Norwegian Peopleís Aid

NSCC New Sudan Council of Churches

OLS Operation Lifeline Sudan

ORS oral rehydration salts

PCOS Presbyterian Church of Sudan

PHCC/PHCC Primary Health Care Centre/Primary Health Care Unit

RASS Relief Association of South Sudan

SCF Save the Children Fund

SDR Swiss Disaster Relief

SINGO Sudanese indigenous non-governmental organization

SMC Sudan Medical Care

SPLA/M Sudan Peopleís Liberation Army/Movement

SRRA Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Association

SSIA/M South Sudan Independence Army/Movement

SUPRAID Sudan Production Aid

TBA traditional birth attendant

UNHCR United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

UNICEF United Nations Childrenís Fund

USAID United States Agency for International Development

VSF Veterinaries sans Frontieres

WFP World Food Programme

WVI World Vision International

---- End of forwarded message ----

Message-ID: <> Date: Thu, 5 Jun 1997 09:27:48 -0400 From: "Younis AI." <younis@RMY.EMORY.EDU> Subject: OPERATION LIFELINE SUDAN: May-1997 Report

Editor: Ali B. Ali-Dinar

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