Published Date: 
Wednesday, April 22, 2020 - 14:00

While acutely addressing the migration related public health emergencies and needs of the current COVID-19 epidemic, IOM’s COVID-19 Regional Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan for Southern Africa will also address the transition from a humanitarian to a development focused programme as there is great need to prepare for the significant medium and long term impacts of the crisis. IOM is currently working closely with governments, UN agencies, relevant stakeholders and implementing partners to support regional and national preparedness and response efforts for COVID-19 and will continue to strengthen coordination and strategic partnerships to support a multilateral response to the epidemic.

More specifically, under the framework of the Regional UN Sustainable Development Group (R-UNSDG), IOM is working closely with other UN agencies including the Development Cooperation Office (DCO) and the Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) to prepare a coordinated response to the medium and long term socio-economic impact of COVID-19 and provide adequate support to African governments. In line with the Secretary General Report of March 2020 entitled Shared Responsibility, Global Solidarity: Responding to the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19, IOM will work closely with UN partners to avoid duplication of efforts and make the most of each agency’s comparative advantage at the local, national as well as regional levels.

At regional and national levels, IOM’s programming will be based on the principles of a whole of society approach and aims to leverage the support of non-traditional actors such as diaspora, youth and the private sector. With the establishment of national and global solidarity funds between Governments, the WHO and the private sector, IOM will partner with the WHO where possible and through other national platforms, inclusive of joint United Nations Country Team (UNCT) engagements to support innovative public-private interventions.

IOM will continue working to support the priorities of Regional Economic Communities and other multilateral organizations (IOC, SADC and COMESA) in relation to response and preparedness to COVID-19, in order to strengthen efforts towards regional solidarity and resilience building.

IOM’s COVID-19 Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan for the Southern Africa region is underpinned by the systematic collection and utilization of data to ensure evidence-based programmatic responses vis-a-vis the fast-changing mobility dynamics.The activities proposed will contribute to the potentiation of the Regional Migration Data Hub for Southern Africa (RMDHub), a platform created by IOM in partnership with SADC Member States and key stakeholders to generate information on migration trends and patterns through data collection, collation and analysis, to help advance migration policies and programmes at national and regional levels.

IOM’s COVID-19 Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan for the Southern Africa region is aligned with IOM’s Global Strategic Preparedness and Response Coronavirus Disease (15 April 2020). Alignment is also made with the WHO Global Strategic Preparedness

and Response Plan (3 February 2020), the forthcoming UN Framework on the Immediate Socio-economic Response to COVID 19, and to country-specific Government and United Nations (UN) response plans. At regional and national levels, IOM will collaborate with governments and stakeholders to achieve the overall objective, to contribute to regional and national preparedness and response efforts for COVID-19 to reduce associated morbidity and mortality and prepare for and address the crosscutting humanitarian and development needs of vulnerable populations, such as migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), impacted by COVID-19, and contribute to the global effort to combat COVID-19 and mitigate its immediate, mid and long term social and economic impacts.

This appeal seeks to respond to the needs of migrants, host communities, displaced populations, and governments respond- ing to COVID-19 in the Southern Africa region. IOM will focus on four priority strategic objectives at community, national and regional levels:

• Priotiry 1: Ensure a well-coordinat- ed, informed and timely response through mobil- ity tracking systems and strengthening partnership and coordination structures established at the community, national and regional levels

• Priority 2: Contribute to global, re- gional, national and com- munity preparedness and response efforts for COVID-19 to reduce asso- ciated morbidity and mortality

• Priority 3: Ensure access of affected people to basic services and commodities, including health care, and protection and social services

• Priority 4: Support international, na-tional and local partners to respond to the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) in partnership with the World Health Organization Regional Office for Africa (WHO Africa), Regional Inter-Agency Standing Committee (RIASCO), the East and Southern Africa region UN Sustainable Develop- ment Group (ESA-R UNSDG), our UN sister agencies and a range of technical institutions in the region, stands ready to assist Member States (MS) and partners to prepare, respond, and recover from COVID-19, with operational and technical support in the following 12 areas:

1. Coordination and Partnerships 2.Tracking Mobility Impacts

2.Tracking Mobility Impacts

3. Risk Communication and Community Engagement (RCCE) 4. Disease Surveillance

4. Disease Surveillance

5. Point of Entry (PoE)

6. National Laboratory System

7. Infection Prevention and Control (IPC)

8. Logistics, Procurement and Supply Management
9. Case Management and continuity of essential services

10. Camp Coordination and Camp Management 11. Protection

11. Protection

12.Addressing Socio-economic Impact for the Crisis