Kalobeyei, 6 April 2018 --UN-Habitat together with UNHCR organized a one-day donor mission to Kakuma to tour the Kalobeyei Integrated Settlement Development Programme. The mission, which was convened by UN-Habitat Executive Director Ms. Maimunah Mohd Sharif, brought together ambassadors and UN-Habitat representatives from several member states - including the main donor to the project, the government of Japan. Others attending included representative from Sweden, alongside UNHCR country representatives, Turkana County and national government officials to showcase the project to the donors.
Being the host county, Turkana County and the national government emphasized how the Kalobeyei Integrated Settlement Development Programme was designed to promote long term socio-economic integration of the refugees and the host communities. The two levels of government also expressed their support for the project to ensure that the vision is realized.
In her speech, Ms. Sharif reaffirmed her support towards the tripartite agreement bringing together the county government, UN-Habitat and UNHCR for project. She further emphasized the role of the agency in promoting the SDGs, namely SDG 11 and the New Urban Agenda especially in post conflict and post-disaster contexts through the ‘Peoples Process Approach’.
“UN-Habitat has used the people’s process in development of the kalobeyei land use plan by allowing the community to be the primary resource in addressing their needs, problems and solutions during the planning process,” Ms. Sharif said adding that given that the plan had been submitted to the county for approval, its approval would pave the way for enforcing the planning and design guidelines.
The UNHCR Country Representative, Raouf Mazou commented on the importance of the UN-Habitat Executive Director’s visit to Kalobeyei and Kakuma, while emphasizing how UN-Habitat had brought the long-term development outlook of the project, considering that UNHCR is mainly focused on humanitarian relief work. Mr. Mazou reiterated that such partnership is in line with the Turkana County Governor’s vision for promoting durable solutions, shifting from developing refugee camps to sustainable settlements to providing a framework for spatial development and economic integration of the host and refugee communities.
Afterwards, the donor delegation visited Kakuma camp and the Kalobeyei New Settlement to observe different approaches used in planning the two settlements. In Kalobeyei, the group visited the various shelter typologies developed by UNHCR and UN-Habitat, the ongoing public space project, innovative sanitation facilities, and the community center. The visit provided the donors an opportunity to see the general spatial development of the settlement at its current stage.
During the concluding session, UN-Habitat and UNHCR reiterated their hopes to donors that existing resources are still limited to sufficiently achieve the objectives. The deputy governor Mr. Peter Emuria Lotethiro also confirmed to the donors that the county and the governor are committed to support the project in all stages to ensure that the sustainable and shared vision is achieved.