News / Africa

World Bank to Contribute Millions to Help Kenya Withstand Drought

A young boy walks away with his food from a government sponsored feeding center in central Turkana, Kenya, August 30, 2011
A young boy walks away with his food from a government sponsored feeding center in central Turkana, Kenya, August 30, 2011

In response to the ongoing crisis in the Horn of Africa, the World Bank is planning to provide Kenya with tens of millions of dollars to improve the country's defenses against future droughts.

The drought and famine currently rippling through east Africa has shown no signs of slowing.  With governments, businesses and people around the world ramping up relief efforts, the World Bank has also decided to intervene.

A team of technical experts on emergency disaster recovery recently wrapped up a mission to assess the needs of the people and governments of East Africa.  The team reviewed the humanitarian situation, the efforts to alleviate the situation, and the various drought prevention mechanisms already in place.

After concluding the mission, the World Bank has announced it will contribute $39 million to help fill gaps it found in the various drought and famine response efforts.  Johannes Zutt is the World Bank Country Director for Kenya and Somalia.

"We have decided to do a few things: one is to provide some emergency financing to Somalia for the U.N. system to help support the livelihoods of Somalis in south-central Somalia," said Zutt.  "We are also going to provide about $30 million to support the purchase of medical supplies and water supplies for the two refugee camps in Dolo Ado, Ethiopia and Dadaab, Kenya."

In addition to providing assistance to address region's immediate needs, the World Bank is looking at ways to improve the long-term livelihoods of people living in drought-prone areas, specifically in Kenya.

As part of their mission, the World Bank team visited Kenya's hardest-hit areas such as Turkana and parts of North Eastern Province.  The team met with local residents as well as national and local government officials to determine what infrastructure existed to guard against drought.

The team concluded that shoring up existing water pipelines and reservoirs, improving environmental management systems, and improving rural infrastructure would provide effective shields against future natural disasters.

According to Zutt, the World Bank is also looking at ways to diversify and reform pastoralist community activities, to make them less vulnerable to drought.

"If you go up to places like Dadaab, to Mandera, you'll see that sheep and goats have eaten shoots of vegetation all the way down to the ground and that is resulting in expanding desertification," added Zutt.  "What needs to happen is that animal populations need to be better controlled."

The World Bank hopes to contribute $87 million to these longer-term projects under its Crisis Response Window program. The $87 million is part of $250 million the World Bank hopes to deliver to the region for drought relief.

The Crisis Response Window program is subject to approval by the World Bank Board of Executive Directors, which is expected to reach a decision in September.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants 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.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs