International agencies have warned that millions of people in South Sudan are not able to fulfill their most basic needs and that they are at the verge of famine, adding if benefactors do not donate and take action for a new donation campaign, thousands of South Sudanese could face harsher situations.
A number of international agencies, such as Oxfam and seven other humanitarian organizations, on Tuesday released a joint statement at a conference on South Sudan in Geneva, regarding the conflict and called on governments to raise awareness.
Oxfam’s country director in South Sudan, Zlatko Gegic, expressed his concerns regarding the conflict saying, ”The hunger season is starting now. Governments can make a difference by committing urgent funding for emergency needs to save thousands of lives and prevent further suffering for millions of South Sudanese. Families need help now.”
At the conference, donors were asked to contribute for the massive funding shortfall, over $1.1 billion to fulfill the humanitarian aid needed for the suffering millions.
CARE South Sudan country director Aimee Ansari stressed on the issue that funding has not been sufficient enough saying,” While needs have risen dramatically, funding hasn’t. Those who need help the most, particularly in remote communities, many of them cut off by fighting, may also end up being cut off from humanitarian aid.”
International Rescue Committee country director Ronald-Paul Veilleux, added that thousands of children were starving and at a high risk of disease and death, saying these children are the future of the country.
The dilemma in South Sudan began only three years after the country gained its independence. Because of the conflict between the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) and its opposition millions of South Sudanese have left their homeland in search of safety and security. Over 400,000 of them have seeked refuge in neighboring countries.