Some 200 households (1,200 people) from communities displaced by communal conflict in Kenya’s Moyale town are set to benefit from new shelters built by IOM.
Inter-communal fighting over resources and political differences – which lasted from August 2013 to January this year – displaced over 30,000 people in Moyale, a town close to the Ethiopian border in Marsabit County. Many people lost everything.
The construction of shelters, which is being funded by Japan through the Japan Supplementary Fund, started in October. A total of 153 shelters now have been completed by IOM with the help of the local communities. The shelters will accommodate vulnerable people, including the sick, elderly, children and pastoralists with low income.
IOM is employing a “cash-for-work” system that allows community members with skills such as carpentry to work on the project. Over 100 labourers from the affected communities are now plastering the walls of the shelters.
IOM constructed the shelters following a request from the Marsabit County to facilitate the return and stabilization of 53,968 internally displaced people whose houses were destroyed or damaged during the conflict.
IOM was already providing essential non-food relief items such as kitchen sets, bedding, jerry cans, hygiene items and solar lamps. It had also constructed community-owned pit latrines in the areas of Mansile, Illadu and Funanyatta in Moyale and 500-litre capacity water tanks to the selected vulnerable households.
Households benefitting from the project were also closely involved in the construction of their own shelter. “To ensure sustainability and ownership, every selected beneficiary had to contribute partly to the construction by bringing locally available materials such aslaths, binding wire and preparing the mud for walling,” said Ahmed Sharif, Head of IOM Kenya’s Migration Crisis Unit.
Widespread destruction caused by border disputes over water, pasture and other issues remain a threat. IOM is working with UN agencies, including UNICEF, UNDP, UNCRD, UNOCHA and UNHCR, and the County authorities in Marsabit, to support cross-border peace agreements signed in March this year.