Three MPs from Garissa County in whose constituencies the Kenya Development Response to Displacement Impacts Project (KDRDIP) is being implemented now want the national government and donors funding the programme to extend it by five more years.
The three, including Dadaab MP Dr. Mohamed Dahiye, Abdikarim Osman (Fafi) and Mohamed Hire (Lagdera) said that the project had positively impacted the livelihoods of more than 1,200 community groups in the area.
KDRDIP is a national government initiative, supported by the World Bank meant to improve the livelihoods of the local communities in the vast Dadaab Refugee camp in Fafi, Lagdera and Dadaab constituencies in Garissa and Kakuma in Turkana County who have been hosting refugees for the past 30 years.
The five-year project that was launched in 2017 is also part of the regional initiative in the Horn of Africa being implemented in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda and Somalia.
Dr. Dahiye said that local NGOs among them the Rural Development Organization (RDO) who are the facilitating partners for KDRDIP should be given roles in the day-to-day running of the project during the second phase.
“The RDO has done an excellent job in mobilizing and assisting the community groups in identifying, prioritizing and implementing their projects and should be given more roles in the next phase of the project,” Dahiye said.
Hire said that KDRDIP has not only supplemented the CDF projects in the area but has tremendously impacted positively on community livelihood programmes in the three constituencies.
“I am urging you, the CS, through your office to engage the World Bank and other donors to secure a phase II of this project. We also want local NGOs who have been assisting KDRDIP to be brought on board,” Hire said.
The MPs were speaking in Dadaab where they had accompanied the Public Service and Special Programmes CS Prof. Margaret Kobia when commissioning theatre equipment at the Dadaab sub-county hospital, opening of a modern library and dormitory at Dadaab high school all funded by KDRDIP.
Prof. Kobia while thanking the local leadership and the communities for their continued support, participation and involvement in the project implementation process also promised to address the leaders and community concerns among them the extension of the project.
“KDRDIP approach has given us very impressive results. The approach presented opportunities and best practices in community development and governance which perhaps need to be considered when doing national development policies going forward,” Prof Kobia said.
“This is one of the projects in the country that has enjoyed enormous political goodwill, community participation and involvement in its implementation process. It has shown that communities have the abilities to identify own development needs, monitor, supervise and participate fully in the decision making on their development initiatives,” she added.
The project is utilizing funds sourced from a World Bank loan of Sh10 billion and additional funding from the Danish International Development Association (DANIDA) of Sh 800 million.
These funds have been distributed to a total of 137 villages spread across 29 wards of the five sub-counties namely Dadaab, Fafi, Lagdera, Turkana West and Wajir South in the three project counties. At the end of the project Garissa will have investments totalling Sh 4 billion, Turkana Sh 3 billion and Wajir Sh 3 billion.
The project is benefitting a combined population of 1,041,436 members of the host communities and 395,982 refugees in the five sub-counties.
So far Sh 7.4 billion has been spent in the last three years to improve infrastructural development, environment and livelihoods in the targeted areas. Another Sh2.6 billion has been earmarked in the 2022/23 Financial Year to complete the outstanding sub-projects.
Present were Micah Powon, PS State Department for the Development of the ASALs, Dr. Anne Kinyua, National Project Coordinator KDRDIP, National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) CEO Rtd Lt Colonel Haret Hassan and Garissa County Commissioner Boaz Cherutich among other senior government officials.
By Jacob Songok