National IDDRSI Platform:

The South Sudan Programming Paper (CPP) was developed and finalized in March 2004 to end drought emergencies in the region.  The CPP outlines a coordination mechanism that was developed through consultation and consensus building between government, development partners, civil society, private sector and other stakeholders. The Coordination Mechanism structure includes an Inter-Ministerial Steering Committee, a multi-stakeholder Technical Committee, and a multi-stakeholder Task Team. The Delivery of the CPP will be led by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, and designated lead ministries and government agencies will coordinate technical stakeholders at the component level.

Therefore, South Sudan IDDRSI Platform Coordination Mechanism (PCM) is housed by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.  Key principles of the Coordination Mechanism include government ownership and leadership, multi-sectoral representation, state and multi-stakeholder representation and participation, sustained technical assistance and capacity building. IDDRSI  PCM includes:

1/ Inter-Ministerial Steering Committee (IMSC):
2/ Technical Committee (TC):
3/Task Team (TT):
4/At the component level:
Designated lead ministries and agencies are coordinating the technical stakeholders in implementation of IDDRSI Priority Intervention Areas (PIAs) thus:
1/ Inter-Ministerial Steering Committee (IMSC):

This body is constituted by all the Ministers of all the relevant ministries, as the highest decision making organ.  It is chaired by the Minister of Environment and Forestry and co-chaired by the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security.  The key functions of the IMSC are provision of political support and policy directives, approval of resource utilization, linkage to the Council of Ministers and Transitional National Legislative Assembly and reporting to the Vice President who is the patron of the Coordination Mechanism in the Country.  

2/ Technical Committee (TC):

The Technical Committee is constituted of the Undersecretaries and Heads of participating Ministries, and agencies, key technical development partners, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), private sector and the head of the IDDRSI secretariat within the Ministry of Environment and Forestry. The main functions of the TC include; supervision of the implementation of the IDDRSI, guiding resource mobilization and coordinate resource allocation, monitoring progress, and reporting to the IMSC.  

The TC is chaired by the Undersecretary, Ministry of Environment and Forestry, co-chaired by the Undersecretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security.

3/Task Team (TT):

This is a multi-sectoral and multi-stakeholder in constitution, with leadership from within government. The membership includes middle level/ technical staff from government ministries and agencies, focal points from each state, expert(s) (technical assistance from IGAD and other Development Partners (DP) and technical representatives from Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs) and private sector. The TT main functions are planning and budgeting for all activities, coordinating and communicating with the stakeholders, organizing meetings and workshops, preparing minutes of the meetings, collecting and analysing data, conducting field visits, disseminating information, reporting the progress of IDDRSI implementation to the TC and obtaining feedback on regular basis.













IDDRSI Priority Intervention Area (PIAs) Lead Agencies

S/ No.


Lead Agencies


Environment and Natural Resources M


Ministry of Environment and Forestry (Chair) and Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation (Co-chair)


Market Access, Trade and Financial Services

Ministry of Finance and Planning (Chair) and Ministry of Trade and Industry (Co-chair)


Livelihood Support and Basic Services

Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security (Chair)  Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries (Co-chair)


Disaster Risk Management, Preparedness and Effective Response

Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management (Chair) and Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries (Co-chair)


Research, Knowledge Management and Technology Transfer

University of Juba (Chair) and National Bureau of Statistics (Co-chair)


Conflict Prevention, Resolution and Peace Building

Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries (Chair) and Peace Commission and Reconciliation (Co-chair)


Coordination, Institutional Strengthening and Partnerships

Ministry of Cabinet Affairs (Chair) and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (Co-chair)


Short summary about the country:

  • The Republic of  South Sudan is a landlocked country in East Africa and borders  Sudan (1,937 km) from the north, Ethiopia (883 km) from the east, Kenya (232 km), Uganda ( 435 km) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (628 km) from the south and the Central African Republic (682 km) from the west. South Sudan has land area of approximately 640,000 square km (excluding Abeyi) with a population estimate of 8,260,490 inhabitants, of which 82% live in the rural areas (approx. average of 13.5 persons per square km) and an annual growth rate of 55% (Statistical Yearbook for Southern Sudan, 2009). She gained independence from Sudan on 9 July 2011 as the outcome of a 2005 agreement that ended Africa's longest-running civil war. South Sudan is mostly covered in tropical forest, swamps, and grassland.  
  • The climate ranges from Tropical Semi-Humid climate with a short rainy season in the north to Tropical Wet-Dry and Tropical Rainy climates with progressively longer wet seasons in the south. The south is characterized by much more rainfall and strong seasonal annual variations.
  • The mean annual rainfall ranges between 500 mm in the north to 1,500 mm in the south (8-9 months a year).  The White Nile passes through the country, passing by the capital city of Juba. Half the water of the White Nile is lost in the swamps as vegetation absorbs it or animals drink it.
  • The largest wetlands and flood plains are, covering 5% of the country, all linked to the Nile tributaries that traverse the central plains. The Sudd wetland is one of the main hydrological features of South Sudan. It is the largest wetland that is formed by the White Nile in very flat topography between the towns of Bor and Malakal, covering more than 30,000 km2.
  • The Sudd comprises multiple channels, lakes and swamps, with a maze of thick emergent aquatic vegetation. In June 2006, an area totalling 57,000 km2 was declared Africa’s second largest Ramsar site. More importantly, its ecosystem services are of immense economic and biological importance for the entire region.
  • The Imatong Mountains are located in the southeast of South Sudan in the erstwhile state of Eastern Equatoria, and extend into Uganda. Mount Kinyeti is the highest mountain of the range at 3,187 metres (10,456 ft), and the highest in the whole of South Sudan.
  • The range has an equatorial climate and had dense montane forests supporting diverse wildlife. In recent years the rich ecology has been severely degraded by forest clearance and subsistence farming, leading to extensive erosion of the steep slopes.  
  • The 2013-2016 civil war displaced 2.6 million people and threatened the success of one of the world's newest countries.


  • Arid and Semi- Arid Lands (ASALs) in South Sudan:

The country is endowed with six agro-ecological zones, namely; the Western Flood Plains, the Eastern Flood Plains, the Nile-Sobat Rivers, the Ironstone Plateau, the Green Belt, the Hills and Mountains, the Semi-arid/ Pastoral Zones, as depicted by map (4) below. The most drought prone Zones are the Semi-arid/ Pastoral, the Western Flood Plains and the Eastern Flood Plains. The arid/ semi-arid land (ASALS-areas that receive less than 600 mm in annual rainfall) covers 12-15% of the whole country, covering Eastern Equatoria and parts of Jonglei states. The predominant livelihood system in the ASALs zones is based on pastoral and agro-pastoral production; it is mainly challenged by lack of regular veterinary services, scarcity of pasture and freshwater, insecurity and the associated violent appropriation of assets and livestock diseases. There is increasing human and social vulnerability to environmental hazards and economic shocks, aggravated by droughts, resource-based conflicts and political instability in South Sudan.

Pastoralism in South Sudan:

  • Pastoralism is defined as pastoral production systems in which 50% of gross household revenue comes from livestock and livestock products (Swift (1988)). Therefore, pastoralist ethnic groups are those who rely on livestock production for their livelihoods and follow the pastoralist culture and the way of life (Baxter, 1994; Morton and Meadows, 2000). In South Sudan, pastoralists are typically found in the arid and semi-arid lands and distinguished from typical agriculture by mobility, often in search of grazing land and water sources.
  • It is indicated that 90% of the population of South Sudanese are rural (32.6% agrarian, 45.5 agro- pastoralists and 12% categorized as fisher – folk and other trades 9.9%) and 10% Urban residents respectively (Ministry of Animal Resources and Fisheries (MARF) Policy,2012/2016). The arable land constitutes 80% and 50% is the prime land.
  • The arid/ semi-arid land covers 12-15% of the whole country. The country is well endowed with a wide range of natural resources: forests, livestock, fisheries and water resources, wildlife, minerals and petroleum/natural gas. The main source of livelihood in the country is crop farming and animal husbandry (76% of the population are involved). South Sudan has the 7th largest herd and the highest livestock per capita holding in Africa with an estimated livestock population of 11.7 million head of cattle, 12.4 million goats and 12.0 million sheep.
  • The main products are meat, dairy products, hides and skin and eggs. Pastoralism is undertaken in the more arid and semi-arid zones such as East Equatoria and parts of Jonglei states.  Livestock systems are either nomadic pastoralist or mixed crop livestock systems and are a major source of livelihoods, especially in the floodplains and the semi-arid pastoral areas.
  •  Livestock is an important economic asset, in addition to having a huge cultural value. Ownership of cattle is also a risk mitigation tool for pastoralists and farmers, the latter continually facing uncertainty caused by crop failure.
  • Data from the Ministry of Animal Resources and Fisheries (MARF) as well as the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) indicate that about 85% of South Sudanese households own one or more animal.  This suggests that South Sudan has approximately 1.1 million livestock farmers. Major challenges facing the livestock industry are as follows:
    1. Social model, which circumscribes market orientation and limits value chain exploitation. 
    2. Weak off -farm infrastructure.
    3. Insecurity and cattle rustling. 
    4. Lack of trust. Inter-communal strife and low level of trust among South Sudanese constitute a hidden tax on transactions.
    5. Poor breeds. 
    6. Poor animal health.
    7. Inadequacy of animal feeds.
    8. Nascent private sector and low level of entrepreneurship. 
    9. Challenging economic policy environment. Several policy factors inhibit growth of the livestock sector. These include: (i) inadequate and high cost of labor; (ii) high transportation costs; (iii) unclear land tenure; and (iv) high and multiple taxation.

Disasters in South Sudan:

  • Drought affected South Sudan in 2010/2011 followed by severe flooding in 2012/2013 (Map 3 below) that had affected nine of the 10 South Sudanese states leaving an estimated 223,000 in need of humanitarian assistance.
  • Outbreaks of armed violence in Juba in December 2013 and July 2016 had forced 2.6 million of South Sudanese to flee their homes with the number of refugees reaching one million in Uganda alone. Half of the population (4.8 million) is in need of lifesaving assistance and protection.
  • Disruptions to markets, rapid inflation (over 800%) and devaluation of the local currency are worsening food insecurity in the country.


    Cholera, malaria and kalaazar continue to be major causes of death in the country


    There are a number of factors that exacerbate the impact of drought in South Sudan, namely:


    1/ Natural resource-based conflict

    2/ Political instability

    3/ Economic marginalization and low investment

    4/ Focus on social off-take rather than economic off-take of livestock 

    5/ Youth unemployment and unrest (cattle rustling/ theft) (Resilience Focus, March 2014)


    IDDRSI Focal Point:

    • Mr Tong Majij Tong          

     IDDRSI Coordinator:

    •  Mr William Olami Athil

     Related  Links 


    Relevant government agency



    Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation


    Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management


    National Bureau of Statistics