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Cablegate: Post-Election Violence in Kenya - Usaid Assessment In

R 171559Z JAN 08
FM AMEMBASSY NAIROBI
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 4278
USMISSION UN ROME
NSC WASHDC
CJTF HOA
CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL

UNCLAS NAIROBI 000196

SIPDIS

AIDAC

USAID/DCHA FOR MHESS, GGOTTLIEB
DCHA/OFDA FOR KLUU, ACONVERY, KCHANNELL, MBRENNAN
DCHA/FFP FOR JDWORKEN, SANTHONY, CMUTAMBA, DNELSON
AFR/EA FOR BDUNFORD
STATE FOR AF/E, AF/F AND PRM
USUN FOR FSHANKS
BRUSSELS FOR PBROWN
GENEVA FOR NKYLOH
USMISSION UN ROME FOR RNEWBERG

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID PHUM PREL KE

SUBJECT: POST-ELECTION VIOLENCE IN KENYA - USAID ASSESSMENT IN
WESTERN KENYA

REFS: A) NAIROBI 000125 B) NAIROBI 000077

-------
SUMMARY
-------

1) A recent USAID assessment team found that while relief operations
in Kenya's ongoing complex emergency are ramping up, several
challenges exist. Continued population movements and fluctuating
numbers and locations of internally displaced persons (IDPs) are
complicating the delivery of emergency relief supplies and critical
services (REF A). Many IDPs are seeking refuge in their ancestral
homelands or with relatives and friends. While immediate needs are
starting to be met in larger settlements, smaller sites have
generally received much less attention and assistance. Priority
needs identified include shelter material, water and sanitation
facilities, and protection initiatives. In addition, future camp
planning activities should address fire hazards from densely-settled
sites, and comprehensive, systematic IDP registration and mapping
would facilitate the humanitarian response. USAID staff anticipate
prolonged humanitarian and economic consequences. End summary.

-------------------
ASSESSMENT FINDINGS
-------------------

2) Between January 10 and January 15, USAID conducted assessments in
the provinces of Rift Valley, Nyanza, and Western to assess priority
humanitarian needs and inform additional program decisions.

3) Overall, the humanitarian response is in its early stages, but is
ramping up (REF B). Initially, churches and other local groups were
actively involved in assisting IDPs. Medecins Sans Frontieres
(MSF), the Government of Kenya (GOK) and the International Committee
of the Red Cross (ICRC) are working in close coordination with the
Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS) to lead rapid response activities.
District disaster committees have been activated and the UN cluster
system is developing a comprehensive response plan.

4) Continued population movements and multiple, spontaneous
settlements are complicating planning and logistics operations of
the humanitarian response. The GoK, through the KRCS, is working to
establish centralized settlements in areas including Nakuru,
Eldoret, Burnt Forest, and Cherengani to ensure better security and
easier provision of assistance. Smaller groups of IDPs, often in
isolated areas, are receiving intermittent services to date.

5) Many IDPs have sought refuge in public places close to their
original homes, such as police stations, schools, and church
compounds, and others are moving in with relatives or friends. Many
are still sleeping in the open air. IDPs, the majority of whom are
women and children, reported reluctance to return to their homes for
multiple reasons including continued threats, burnt and destroyed
homes and property, as well as fears of renewed attacks. In
addition, feelings of insecurity are heightened among IDPs who faced
similar threats following the 1992 and 1997 presidential elections.

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PRIORITY CONCERNS
-----------------

6) Due to the development of spontaneous IDP settlements, several
challenges are arising. At present, IDPs require blankets and
shelter material such as plastic sheeting. Water quality, storage,
and access were also raised as problems. Most sites lack
appropriate sanitation facilities and infrastructure like water taps
and lighting. The GoK is trying to move IDPs to more appropriate
locations with proper amenities, such as district agricultural
showgrounds.

7) The sanitation situation is slowly improving as the humanitarian
response becomes mobilized. Multiple agencies, including MSF, CARE,
the UN Children's Fund, and World Vision, are addressing the lack of
latrines. However, in some settlements, there are no latrines and
in others the number of latrines is far below accepted international
standards. In one settlement, there was one latrine for 3,000
people. While beneficial in the medium-term, efforts to consolidate

IDPs in larger sites are complicating water and sanitation services
in the near-term.

-------------------
ADDITIONAL CONCERNS
-------------------

8) Health coverage is weak to date but improving as information
becomes available and partners enhance coordination mechanisms. The
Ministry of Health (MOH), MSF, and KRCS are providing mobile health
clinics. However, the MOH reports that insecurity or the threat of
insecurity is making it difficult for people to access health
facilities and for health staff to go to work.

9) To date there are no reports of widespread disease outbreaks.
The MOH reported 3 suspected measles cases in Eldoret and is
planning a measles vaccination campaign for all camps. Respiratory
infections and diarrhea are surfacing as common health problems.
Very few deaths have been reported in camps from health problems
associated with displacement.

10) IDPs repeatedly expressed concern for getting children back into
school. Not only have schools been burned down and teachers
displaced, but students and teachers do not want to return to
schools in mixed ethnic areas due to insecurity. In addition, it is
not easy for displaced children to register in schools near IDP
sites and, as a result, many children are not going to school. Many
IDPs interviewed said their children's books and school uniforms had
been burned.

11) Food is reaching the displaced although not always in sufficient
quantities and regularly. According to the UN World Food Program
(WFP), there are sufficient stocks of food commodities in country,
with WFP supplementing pulses, oils, corn-soya blend and high energy
biscuits to GoK-donated cereals. Although WFP is borrowing food
from its existing operations in Kenya to respond, the UN
organization says this is not affecting its ongoing programs. The
displaced said they do not have the means to cook whole kernel maize
provided by the GoK nor the firewood to cook it properly and would
prefer milled maize. The lack of milk for young children was
another concern.

12) Beyond the immediate humanitarian impact, the post-election
crisis has significantly impacted people's income-generating
activities and resulted in substantial losses. Burnt fields and
businesses, un-harvested crops, market disruptions, and looting are
expected to have long-term consequences. Even those who are not
displaced have lost jobs, market opportunities, and employees.
Medium and long-term assistance will be needed to mitigate the
economic impact of the ongoing crisis, particularly if the upcoming
March planting season is missed. IDPs expressed a desire to restart
their businesses pending improved security and access to loans.

---------------------
USAID RECOMMENDATIONS
---------------------

13) While the GoK and KRCS have been responding well, their capacity
is overstretched. USAID recommends that partners support and build
their capacity. Priority needs identified include shelter material,
water and sanitation support, and protection initiatives,
particularly for smaller IDP locations that have yet to receive
sufficient assistance. In addition, to prevent yet further
disaster, future camp planning activities must address fire hazards
from densely-settled sites. Comprehensive and systematic IDP
registration and mapping would facilitate the humanitarian response.
In the area of food, corn-soya blend (CSB) and other
child-appropriate food should continue to be provided and milled
maize should be provided where possible. Long-term economic
livelihood initiatives will be needed for IDPs who have become
destitute and lack economic safety nets.

------------
USG RESPONSE
------------

14) USAID's Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) has
provided an immediate USD 200,000 to KRCS for the purchase and
E

distribution of emergency relief supplies, including blankets and
shelter material for communities displaced by the violence. On
January 13, OFDA airlifted 350 rolls of plastic sheeting for 2,800
families, valued at more than USD 173,000 including transport, to
Eldoret to supplement existing shelter resources. OFDA is currently
working to program approximately USD 4.6 million as pledged by
Ambassador Ranneberger to address health, additional shelter, water,
sanitation, and hygiene needs, and protection. The USG is the
largest donor to WFP in Kenya, and many IDPs are receiving
USG-donated emergency food relief. Field staff continue to conduct
assessments as security allows, and to liaise with UN, international
relief agencies, and other donors to facilitate humanitarian
response efforts.
RANNEBERGER

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