South Sudan Meteorological Department has released Seasonal Forecast for October to December 2023.




      By Khamis Cosmas Lokudu

South Sudan Meteorological Department has released the seasonal forecast for October to December 2023 to help decision-makers from the Government line ministries and partners develop appropriate measures to save lives and mitigate property destruction.

The seasonal forecast indicated the occurrence of above-average rainfall over the East of Eastern Equatoria, Moderate rain in most areas of eastern and central Equatoria State, Southern Greater Jonglei State, Western part of Western Equatoria State, and North-Eastern part of Upper Nile State, and below average rainfall expected in the Northern part of central equatorial state and in many areas of South-west of western Equatoria State while little or dry conditions in west of central, northwest and much of  Northern parts of the country.  

According to the South Sudan Meteorological Department, the Counties with high probability of receiving above-average from 70-80mm include Kapoeta East, Boma, and Pibor respectively.

The counties expected to have moderate rain which is 60-70mm are Pibor, Akobo, and Yambio however, counties of Uror, Twic East, Duk, Bor South, and the whole of central Equatoria, Nzara, Ezo, Tambura part of Nagero, Maiwut, Maban and portion of Renk are likely to receive below average rainfall ranging from 50-60mm and the expectation for the rest of the country is little or dry conditions.

The consensus climate outlook for October to December 2023 per South Sudan Meteorological department has both positive and negative implications to watch. On the positive side, the areas receiving above-normal rainfall will have good performance of crops in most of the cropping areas like the green belt, vegetation, adequate pasture, water for livestock and wildlife, and plenty of fish. 

This enhanced rainfall will also be favorable for second-season crop performance and as rainfall progresses, it provides some relief to areas of eastern Equatoria affected by the recent drought for them to fully recover. 

The October to December 2023 rains will likely have a negative knock-on exacerbating impact on the flood situation in South Sudan. Heavy rains over the Lake Victoria basin will result in rising levels of the lake, which are already higher than average due to above-average precipitation received in the first half of 2023. 

These high levels will increase the levels of White Nile, which flows from Lake Victoria in   Uganda through South Sudan where it crosses the Greater Upper Nile region, heightening the risk of a fifth consecutive year of exceptionally widespread floods due to the overflow of the river, and an expansion of permanently flooded areas in an area of the country characterized by the highest cereal production deficit, and by the highest prevalence and severity of acute food insecurity

Important infrastructure like roads and bridges may be destroyed, limiting access to food and essential non-food items.  Though there might be improved pastures for livestock, there is also an elevated risk of livestock deaths, exacerbated by diseases like Rift Valley Fever pneumonia and liver flukes infestation. 

Existing human disease outbreaks like cholera, measles, and malaria will likely worsen with the impact of flooding, aggravating acute malnutrition and the possibility of more people being displaced is expected at this seasonal prediction. 

The temperature forecast for South Sudan indicates that Magwi, Morobo, Ibba, Raja, and Maiwut are expected to be warmer from October to December South Sudan Meteorological officials added. 

The key Advisories to different sectors by South Sudan Meteorological Department. 

There is a need for timely unclogging of the drainage systems to allow a steady flow of water to avoid blockages and lower flooding risks.

South Sudan National Government to make financial resources available to take care of the communities during and after the predicted disaster.

South Sudan Government to inform communities in high-risk areas on the dangers of the October to December 2023 rainfall predicated season and make preparations for relocations. 

The government to ensure that the community management committees get trained to help them monitor and rehabilitate the dykes.

The responsible institutions within the South Sudan Government to conduct Community awareness campaigns during this seasonal forecast to keep the communities awake on the seasonal prediction.

The National Ministry of Health to Intensify malaria control interventions in the country following the prediction of Malaria during October to December 2023 seasonal forecast.

The National Ministry of Health to ensure the availability of clean water and treatment tabs to communities from October to December 2023. 

The National Ministry of Health to intensify mosquito control interventions and environmental management for this predicated season. 

South Sudan Government to consider rehabilitation of rainwater drainage to avoid flooding in the near future. 

The National Ministry of Health should sensitize the community members to seek treatment on time and encourage bed net utilization.

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