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Chad IDP Figures Analysis

IDMC estimates that there were up to 111,500 internally displaced people (IDPs) in Chad as of 13 August 2015.

 

This is based on reports published by OCHA and the Italian NGO ALISEI and includes IDPs who live in protracted displacement as well as IDPs that fled in 2015.

Between 2006 and 2008, 181,000 people were displaced by armed conflict, inter-ethnic violence and attacks by criminal groups known as coupeurs de route. Since then, an estimated 110,000 people have returned to their homes, integrated locally or settled elsewhere in the country, leaving 71,000 IDPs in a protracted situation.

In addition, Boko-Haram attacks in the area of Lake Chad in the west of the country forced at least 40,500 people to flee their homes between January and August 2015. Furthermore up to 8,500 Chadian returned from Nigeria. Those movements are affecting host communities, as they need to share their scarce resources with them.

As reported by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the government of Chad declared in 2012 that internal displacement was over and stopped recognizing IDPs living in a protracted situation who had not returned home. According to the humanitarian community, the 71,000 remaining IDPs are located in the eastern part of Chad, more precisely in the Dar Sila region. They live in IDP sites in Goz Beida, Koukou and Dogdoré. Some of these IDPs appear to have left the sites to go back to their villages but actors on the ground had difficulties to assess how many and whether returns were durable.

The preferred option of most of the remaining IDPs in the east of the country is local integration in their place of refuge or resettlement. Current conditions have however not yet allowed them to achieve a durable solution.

Since 2007, UNHCR and its partners have conducted several profiling exercises to determine the number and location of IDPs and provide disaggregated data on their age, sex, ethnicity and village of origin. The 2013 consolidated humanitarian appeal for Chad reported 49,460 women and 40,540 men among the IDP population, of which two thirds were under 18 years. The difficulty of collecting data is being compounded by the fact that UNHCR and other humanitarian organisations have downscaled their assistance to IDPs in 2014.

As a result, the biggest limitation of the IDP figures living in protracted situation for Chad is that progress towards durable solutions, especially local integration of the remaining IDPs, is not systematically assessed nor documented.  The total number of remaining IDPs could therefore be lower.

The above figures do not include people displaced by slow-onset and sudden-onset natural hazards. In 2012, floods forced around 500,000 people to take refuge in makeshift camps or with host families. This amounted to the highest per capita displacement by disasters worldwide that year. In 2013 and 2014, the eastern part of Chad was affected by floods forcing respectively at least 133,000 and at least 1,000 people to flee.

IDMC uses only the most credible accurate information available. Notwithstanding the caveats and limitations of the source information described above, IDMC believes this to be the best data and is grateful to the partners for sharing it.