Leaders in Homa Bay County have called for measures to curb the increasing number of street families in Nyanza region.
Led by Homa Bay County Commissioner Moses Lilan, the leaders noted that there was need for all the stakeholders to come up with a framework to address the escalating numbers of street families.
Lilan noted that the last population census showed that the number of people living on the streets was 46,633, out of which 5,382 were in Nyanza.
Speaking in Homa Bay today during a public participation forum on national policy on rehabilitation of street families, Lilan said there was an urgent need for both national and county governments to come up with measures to curb the menace in the region.
“In Homa Bay County, street families menace may not be widespread right now but if we don’t take the necessary steps to prevent escalation, then chances are that in the coming days we will join the rest of the towns who have a big problem related with the street families,” The Commissioner said adding street families bred criminal activities and must urgently be resolved.
“Majority of the members of street families are prone to engaging in all manner of criminal activities including drug peddling, armed robbery and even terrorism, “Lilan stressed.
The administrator noted that according to the last census Homa Bay County had 658 street families and the number was rising owing to circumstances that pushes people into the street.
On his part, Street Families Rehabilitation Trust Fund trustee Alex Masibo said broken families, lack of access to basic needs, child labour and death of parents pushes many to the streets. He said the trust fund was coming up with a holistic policy with clear guidelines on rehabilitation and strengthening of family units.
At the same time he urged residents to make homes friendly and welcome those traced back to their families as well as strengthen positive parenting. He said that their main aim is to rescue, re-habilitate, re-integrate and re-socialize the street families. “We want to make our country free from street families,” he added.
He noted that Nairobi recorded the highest number of street families at 15,337 followed by Mombasa 7,529 and Kisumu with 2,746. “Males comprise 72.4 per cent of street persons and female 27.6per cent, majority being the youth at 45.3 per cent followed by children at 33.8 per cent and old persons at 2.4per cent,” he said.
By Davis Langat.