Somalia: Can Aid Come in Time to Avert Famine in Somalia?

Garowe – The drought in Somalia is so severe it threatens not only to trigger famine, but also the viability of the age-old pastoralist way of life.

Somalis are tough and resourceful, but this is the third consecutive year of failed rains. Whatever resilience remains is being tested to the limit.

On the road out of Garowe, the capital of the northeastern Puntland region, IRIN encountered three young brothers standing next to decomposing camel carcasses and clumps of dead goats.

The boys – aged under 18 – had been left behind in the desert to tend to the family’s last two camels. The family once had 300 goats – down now to 50. They used to have 15 camels. Now, just these two remained, both too weak to move.

The boys had nothing to feed the animals. All they could do was wait for their parents, who were away checking a nearby village to see if any food or pasture might be available.

They would be lucky to find any. In the arid northern regions of Somaliland and Puntland, people load their animals onto trucks and travel far afield on just the rumour of pasture.

Source: Angola Press News Agency