Status of River Breakages Along Juba and Shabelle Rivers - Issued October 2023

Title Language: 
The Food and Agriculture Organization’s Somalia Water and Land Information Management (FAO SWALIM) Project, has finalized the analysis and mapping of the river breakages along the Juba and Shabelle rivers using very high resolution satellite imagery. Breakages identified in the map have been classified into four different categories; Open, Overflow, Canal Flooding Point and Closed with sandbags. A legend/Key for further explanation of the different types of breakages is provided. A total of 170 Open points, 46 Canal flooding points, 152 Overflow points and 29 points closed with sandbags have been identified along the Shabelle River while 26 Open points, 10 Canal flooding points, 16 Overflow points and 14 points closed with sandbags have been identified along the Juba River which require immediate attention. Several other points, which are either potential or temporarily closed with sandbags, have also been identified. The forecast ElNino season is likely to result to enhanced rainfall in Somalia and Ethiopian Highlands with high potential of flooding over the Juba and Shabelle rivers especially where open and potential points have been identified. There is therefore an immediate need to close the open points and reinforce areas where there are weak river embankments. Intervening agencies are advised to take advantage of the current dry period until the rains start and carry out temporary or long term measures to close the river breakages. This will see a reduction of riverine flooding in case of heavy rains and consequently a massive reduction in economic losses to the country.
Date of publication: 
October, 2023