UN World Food Programme

DRC: Operational Update- 10 November 2008

Goma, 10 November 2008 - The latest from the WFP team in Goma, eastern DRC:

• WFP is continuing its operations to move food to the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, and to complete food distributions to people displaced by the recent upsurge in fighting. On Monday, WFP expects to complete the distribution of 10-day food rations to over 135,000 people in six camps around Goma.

• The food distribution at one of these camps in Kibati, north of Goma - which was disrupted on Friday by fighting in the nearby hills - is due to be completed by the International Committee of the Red Cross by Tuesday. Distributions in the largest of the six camps, Mugunga 1, is due to be completed on Monday.

• Access beyond Kibati north into Rutshuru is blocked at this stage, due to the level of fighting in the area. WFP is extremely alarmed by the situation and is exploring all possible options to deliver supplies into Rutshuru.

Call for ceasefire observance

• WFP is again calling on all parties to the conflict to put in place a genuine ceasefire and allow humanitarian staff safe and unhindered access to reach people who are in need.
• More food is on its way to Goma on truck and barge to bolster WFP's current food supplies. About 20 trucks are crossing into Goma from Rwanda and Uganda every day, and barges are also delivering food from Bukavu (South Kivu) on a daily basis. Seven hundred tons of food is also being dispatched from Dar es Salaam on 26 trucks for Goma, and food is also moving across Lake Kivu from Zambia towards Goma (transiting via Uvira and Bukavu).

• WFP estimates the total number of displaced people and host family members in need of food assistance across the east of DRC to be over 1.3 million. The number of displaced breaks down as 750,000 in North Kivu, 108,500 in South Kivu and 200,000 in Orientale. The number of host family members is estimated at 200,000 in North Kivu, 40,000 in South Kivu and 75,000 in Orientale.

• The total outstanding tonnage of food required between now and the end of April 2009 is over 55,000 metric tons, at a cost of US$61 million.