No money to repatriate Somali refugees, says UN official
Kenya: The Government is facing challenges in raising Sh8.8 billion needed to fund the voluntary repatriation of refugees from Somalia back to their home country.
Kenya, Somalia and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) have been seeking the money from the international community for the repatriation of more than half a million Somali refugees living in Kenya following decades of conflict in the horn of Africa country.
Commissioner for the Department of Refugees Affairs (DRA) Harun Komen said that the response to requests for donor funding have been below expectations.
“It appears that the attention of international donors is currently focused on conflicts in other parts of the world such as Iraq and Syria, where humanitarian needs are at the highest. But we hope the plight of refugees in Kenya is not forgotten,” he said yesterday.
Last week, UNHCR convened a regional meeting in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa to refocus donor attention to the need for funding for Somali refugees in Kenya and their repatriation back home.
The DRA official said some 5,000 refugees from Somalia who are ready to return home will be assisted to repatriate once their final dates are agreed upon by the Somali government and UNHCR.
This includes 2,200 refugees from Kakuma Camp and 2800 from Dadaab, who will be repatriated using funds from UNHCR.