Covid-19, internal conflict and lack of funding weaken the DRC

A South Sudanese refugee and her child in Bele settlement, Haut Uele province, the Democratic Republic of the Congo A South Sudanese refugee and her child in Bele settlement, Haut Uele province, the Democratic Republic of the Congo UNHCR/Jean-Jacques Soha

9 June 2020

The serious condition in the Democratic Republic of Congo requires fundings to provide aid for people in need

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has already been through hard times for decades and the situation of the population does not seem to improve.

Conflicts and violence have been weakening the country and now DRC is facing new problems caused by Covid-19 pandemic and funding gaps. All together, it represents a real threat that must not be ignored.

Within the country, the most hit categories of people are those who flee and the refugees. On one hand, DRC has recorded 4,105 confirmed cases of Covid-19 which represents the second-largest number in the Southern Africa region. On the other hand, clashes and riots do not stop leading the country to a desperate situation. Hundreds of thousands more people in the east of the country are forced to flee. People uprooted represent Africa’s largest internal displacement situation while most of the refugees come from Rwanda. UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency makes notice that this situation requires urgent money and financial sources especially because underfunding may cause devastating consequences on life-saving humanitarian programmes. For example, only 20 percent of the funding has been raised for the activities to assist and protect the refugees and the displaced out of the US$168 million needed. This means the conditions of thousands of people risk to get worse and the chances of the spreading of the virus has risen. This leads UNHCR to make difficult choices to choose who to give assistance to.

The consequences for the people of DRC risk to be disastrous and being united is not the priority in those countries where violence predominates. This scenario is very common. The UNHCR agency commented that “We are working to help the most vulnerable to the extent possible, minimum standards in health, water and sanitation, education and other basic needs are often hard to meet with limited resources available for all populations”.


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Author: Giulia Francescon; Editor: Shrabya Ghimire

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