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The Government of Kenya and the UN Launch a 764 Million USD appeal for Humanitarian Response in Kenya for 2012 - 2013

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NAIROBI, Kenya, December 15, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Mr Aeneas Chuma, together with Mr. Mohammed Elmi, the Minister for Northern Kenya and Other Arid Lands, the Assistant Minister of State for Special Programmes; Mr. Mohammed Gabbow, the Country Director for Islamic Relief Fund, Mr Rashid Abdulla and Ms Tegla Loroupe, Founder of the Tegla Loroupe Peace Foundation today launched the 2012+ Kenya Emergency Humanitarian Response Plan (EHRP) appeal seeking US$764 million to address humanitarian needs and build Kenya's resilience to disasters in 2012.

The 2012+ Kenya EHRP is jointly developed by the United Nations, Government Departments and NGOs, and outlines key priorities for response in the coming year.

“The appeal method in its four years of being launched in Kenya is richer and the best instrument for ensuring that best practices are adhered to by the implementing partners in addressing disasters and building resilience in the country,' noted Hon. Elmi. “Current efforts by the Government of Kenya to end drought emergencies in the country through implementation of the Drought Management Authority and the drought and disaster Contingency Fund will enable us respond in time to prevent humanitarian crises from drought and other disasters, we need similar instruments in the international community.”

“The humanitarian context in Kenya is characterized by a combination of chronic needs and acute shocks that range from the current floods witnessed in various parts of the country to inter-communal and resource-based conflict,” stated Mr Chuma. “The EHRP multi-year strategy provides an opportunity for stakeholders to improve the coordination of humanitarian programming and activities by identifying, prioritizing and addressing the acute as well as medium- and longer-term humanitarian needs.”

The Plan was developed to respond to acute humanitarian needs in Kenya including drought, the ongoing refugee crisis, floods, internal displacement and urban humanitarian challenges. The strategy has also adopted a medium- to long-term approach in recognition of the need to build resilience among those communities repeatedly affected by emergencies.

“You all appreciate that the Government alone cannot handle all humanitarian needs of vulnerable populations. It is in this regard that over the years it has welcomed the support of international organizations and NGOs,” Mr Gabbow stated.

In recent years, Kenya has experienced a significant increase in the incidences of drought punctuated by unseasonal and intense rains resulting in floods. The combined effects of poor people's vulnerability has meant that in the event of such disasters, already vulnerable populations such as pastoralists and those residing in the urban slums have been disproportionately affected.

“The failure of the 2011 Long Rains season resulted in 3.7 million persons facing food insecurity. However, the October-December Short Rains have been normal to above normal,” Mr Chuma noted. “Water availability is improving and pasture and vegetation are recovering. This is thus an opportune time to scale up our recovery efforts.”