The UNICEF in June 2017 warned that more than 5.6 million children are at increased risk of contracting waterborne diseases as the rainy season begins in conflict-affected areas of countries around Lake Chad.
The threat of disease outbreaks in Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria coincides with growing regional insecurity and increased population movements particularly in Nigeria’s northeast.
Unsafe water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene conditions can lead to cholera outbreaks and to Hepatitis E, a deadly disease for pregnant women and their babies, while standing water pools can attract malaria-carrying mosquitoes.
Flooding and muddy roads in the region can severely limit humanitarian access to remote areas for several weeks, just as the needs of children and families are sharply on the rise because of heightened insecurity across the region.
About Lake Chad Crisis
• Lake Chad is a large, shallow, endorheic lake in Africa, which has varied in size over the centuries.
• Lake Chad is economically important, providing water to more than 68 million people living in the four countries (Chad, Cameroon, Niger, and Nigeria) surrounding it.
• More than 2.3 million people across four countries are completely displaced by violence from Boko Haram militants who have plundered, raped, kidnapped and terrorised their way across the Northern Nigerian State of Borno and into neighbouring regions.
• Many of the displaced people live with no access to food, health services or even basic amenities like toilets.
• According to the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), the soaring food insecurity has left 7.1 million people without access to food with 515000 suffering from severe malnutrition.