Crop prospects are favourable, reflecting generally widespread and normal to above normal rainfall. Heavy rains and the spilling of water from the Lagdo hydroelectric dam caused floods and some damage to infrastructure along the River Benue in the Northern Province. About 1 000 persons have been displaced The overall food supply situation is satisfactory. However, following food supply difficulties in northern areas affected by poor crops in 1998, WFP distributed 9 500 tonnes of food to 660 000 affected persons.
CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC (10 November)
Following reduced rainfall in June and early July, precipitation remained generally widespread and normal to above normal since mid-July. Rains were particularly heavy in late July/early August and in late September/early October. Harvest prospects are favourable. The food supply situation is satisfactory.
CONGO, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF*
(10 November) Abundant and regular rains covered the entire country in September and October except in the south-east and the extreme west. The food supply situation is very tight in most parts of the country. Recent FAO estimates indicate that over 10 million people are living in conditions of food insecurity, including some two million seriously-affected people. In addition, 150 000 people have taken refuge in neighbouring countries. The most affected groups according to the report include 831 000 displaced persons, 844 000 vulnerable urban residents and some 300 000 refugees currently in the DRC. Other affected people include 5.1 million living along the front line, and 2.5 million people in homes hosting the displaced. Another 4.1 million people are in isolated rural areas and are vulnerable to food insecurity. The division of the country in two since the start of the conflict has virtually halted all formal internal trade, while population displacements have seriously disrupted agricultural activities. The deterioration of people's purchasing power, and the shortage of basic consumer goods have exacerbated the food problem. A cholera outbreak was reported in Kisangani in September. Tens of thousands have fled ethnic clashes in Bunia in the northeast, near the Ugandan border, following an outbreak of ethnic clashes between the Wahema and Walendu people. Many villages have been destroyed since July and 100 000 to 150 000 people have fled their homes. Fighting is also reported in Equateur Province.
CONGO, REP OF* (10 November)
The upsurge of civil conflict between Government forces and Ninja militia disrupted agriculture and marketing activities, reduced food imports and seriously affected the nutrition and food supply situation, notably in Brazzaville. About 800 000 persons were displaced following civil disturbances. About 100 000 came to Pointe Noire and 200 000 to Brazzaville, while about half a million were still in the interior of the country. Heavy rains caused floods that affected some 40 000 people in about 30 villages in the Cuvette region in the north. The Pool region remains inaccessible to humanitarian organizations. Out of the 200 000 displaced people who have returned from Pool to Brazzaville since May, 14 700 people, including more than 3 300 children under five, have been treated for serious malnutrition in the city's nutritional centres.
EQUATORIAL GUINEA (10 November)
Rainfall remained below average in October. The staple crops are sweet potatoes, cassava and plantains.
GABON (10 November)
The main foodcrops are cassava and plantains but some maize is also produced (around 25 000 tonnes). The country commercially imports the bulk of its cereal requirement, estimated at around 82 000 tonnes in 1999. Around 10 000 refugees from Congo-Brazzaville are reported in temporary sites or in Libreville.