OCHA Kenya Weekly Humanitarian Update vol. 6, 20 - 22 Feb 2008
I. General Overview
The congestion and crowded conditions in some of the IDP camps has raised concerns about lowering standards of service provision as camps such as the ASK Showground in Eldoret which was designed to hold 15,000 people is now hosting 21,000 while the showground parking lot in Nakuru that was meant for 8,000 is hosting more than 11,000. The need for additional sites to ease this congestion becomes critical as larger or additional camps which can be properly planned will allow for improved service delivery and facilities. The government.s plan to consolidate small camps into larger entities is designed, in part, to ease the process. New sites continue to be developed and laid out but tents are needed urgently to ensure that IDP families are sheltered. Tents have already been provided in the Molo site, the Nakuru Showground parking lot and two sites in Naivasha.
In Western Province, local conflict resolution and peace building initiatives in all 17 districts were originally started in order to prevent the outflow of IDPs from the province. One of the positive outcomes has been the 90% reduction in the number of IDPs and the early return of more than 50,000 persons to their homes and farms. The peace dialogue has involved the active participation of government officials, youth, religious leaders and women.s organizations, the affected population as well as politicians. A spin-off of the peacebuilding has been the voluntary return of goods looted from supermarkets in Teso district.
An assessment that was conducted mid-February on the impact of political violence on Kenya’s livestock sector found that in January livestock was stolen, moved without permission or slaughtered as people fled the conflict. Uasin Gishu District has lost 30% of its livestock, while Nakuru and Trans Nzoia districts have lost 40%. Police say on average 40 animals are stolen each day in the conflict areas, a situation which has drastically lowered milk production. Many prize breeding animals or even valuable dairy species have been lost or have had to be abandoned as the owners were displaced.
In 2007, the government gazetted (officially created) several new districts nationwide to decentralize service delivery. Molo District which was carved out of Nakuru and Kisii District was further sub-divided into a total of 8 newer districts. The border areas between some of these districts have experienced tension since then but the post-elections violence and the resultant population movements have escalated these tensions into violence. The ethnic links within each border serve as further flashpoints. Clashes have flared up recently between the Kisii, Kipsigis and Masai in the vicinity of the border between Buret, Gucha and Kiligoris districts.
The three districts established in 2007 in the nation.s capital were Nairobi West, Nairobi North and Nairobi East and these will form the focus for community peacebuilding through the emergency volunteer scheme being launched from the 22nd of February. An initial group of 200 male and female volunteers will comprise influential persons, retired professionals and youth leaders. They are expected to play key roles in instilling a sense of responsibility and dignity to their communities; orientate residents to shun violence; and ensure positives attitudes are retained within these areas. The volunteers will also be taught to handle and speed up delivery of urgently required services during times of emergency. The city.s priority hot-spots of Dandora, Kibera, and Huruma have been identified to kick off the Emergency Volunteer Scheme which will eventually be introduced in similar slums and in rural hotspots in other parts of the country. The aim of the initiative is to promote national healing and ensure a sense of safety and security in neighbourhoods in the aftermath of killings and displacement of hundreds of thousands of people in the Central, Nyanza, Western, Nairobi and Rift Valley provinces.
Meanwhile, mediation talks continue to and the Legal Working Group to transform an eventual political deal between rival political parties into a mutually acceptable legal framework began work Wednesday. The talks, which are now focusing on modalities for a power-sharing accord between the Party of National Unity and the Orange Democratic Movement, have been described as “progressing well.”
Full report at Reliefweb