News / Africa

Kenyan Lawmaker Sues Over Failure to Resettle IDPs

A boy talks to his mother, both internally-displaced persons, as she has lunch outside their temporary holding ground in Nakuru, Kenya, April 2008 (file photo)
A boy talks to his mother, both internally-displaced persons, as she has lunch outside their temporary holding ground in Nakuru, Kenya, April 2008 (file photo)

A Kenyan lawmaker is suing the country’s prime minister, internal security minister, and others for the government’s failure to resettle thousands of people displaced by ethnic violence following elections almost five years ago.

Member of Parliament for Naivasha John Mututho said the government has turned its back on thousands of internally-displaced people living in miserable conditions.

“It has continued to tramp on the rights of the IDPs numbering 350,000," Mutuhos said. "It is obvious that the ministers from this government are not willing or are not able to resolve the problem before the next general elections. The IDPs are a creation of this government. The same process that created this government is the one that created these IDPs."

Mututho’s lawsuit names Prime Minister Raila Odinga, who is head of the Orange Democratic Movement party, Minister of Internal Security George Saitoti, who is chairman of the Party of National Unity, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, and several ministers.

The Orange Democratic Movement and the Party of National Unity are the two parties that comprise Kenya’s coalition government.

Mututho, who is not a member of the ruling coalition, is calling on the government to re-settle and compensate the thousands of people who escaped the killings, lootings, and other violence in the months following the December 2007 elections and who are still living in camps, largely in tents with little food, water and sanitation.

“The only thing that we have in a just government is to have the court action to restore these IDPs’ rights and to bar these political parties from participating in the [upcoming] elections if they do not settle the IDPs,” Mututho said.

He noted that the government has taken some measures to re-settle people, but says most of the money for this purpose has been squandered.

Mututho also is calling on the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission not to draw up electoral boundaries for the next elections until the IDPs have been settled, saying that such a large unsettled population could sway votes.

When contacted by VOA, government spokesman Alfred Mutua and officials from the Party of National Unity and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission would not comment on the case. Mutua said the government is discussing the plight of the IDPs.

The Kenya Human Rights Commission estimates that more than 663,000 Kenyans fled their homes in the days and months following the December 2007 elections.

Much of the fighting was ethnic based, where communities turned against one another following the disputed election results. Subsequent investigations by different organizations accuse politicians of whipping up ethnic sentiments for political gains. More than 1,000 people were killed.

Through the years, the Kenyan government has conducted a number of programs and offered funds for people to return to their original homes or start up new lives elsewhere. But there are still about 20 settlements where people are living in temporary shelters.

The Hague-based International Criminal Court is expected to announce next Monday whether it will proceed with the trials of six high-level suspects for their alleged roles in masterminding or financing the post-election violence.

Kenyans are set to go to the polls anytime this year or by March of next year. The exact date is still not set.

You May Like

India PM Modi's party distances itself from religious conversions

BJP under fire for being slow to rein in hardline affiliate groups allegedly trying to promote a Hindu-dominant agenda by luring Muslims and Christians to convert to Hinduism More

Anti-Whaling Group Found in Contempt of Court

Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers in the waters off Antarctica continue their campaign to disrupt Japan's annual whale hunt More

UN's Ban Urges End to Discrimination Against Ebola Workers

Ban was speaking in Guinea on the second day of a whistle-stop tour aimed at thanking healthcare workers of the countries at the heart of the epidemic More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid