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Oromo Refugees in Kenya petition UNHCR over Insecurity

By   /  April 1, 2010  /  No Comments

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Nairobi (Alshahid)- A delegation of Oromo refugees living in Kenya has asked the UNHCR to consider relocating them to a safer third country.

 This comes after one of them was killed in Nairobi in what is believed to be an extension of the conflict between the Oromo and Ethiopia government.

Talking to Alshahid reporter, Mr. Hashim Adam Hamza, an official of Oromo Refugee Youth Association in Kenya, said that they held a meeting with the top brass of UNHCR- Kenya, who included; officers from Protection Unit, Health, Education and social welfare.

The group was led by the community leader Mr. Hajji Wako.

“We told UNHCR that Ethiopian government spies and assassins have followed us into Kenya .” This was in reference to the killing of an Oromo refugee in Nairobi ’s Kariobangi estate.

 The Oromo have had a long (150 years) conflict with the government of Ethiopia . Most of them have sought refuge in Kenya .

 Some of the refuges’ complaints were that the Kakuma camp is heavily congested with over 16000 Oromo families, leave alone the other communities.

“The food ration is very small. We get 10 kgs of flour per family for a month.” said Hamza. They are living under inhuman conditions devoid of health services; and their education being neglected.

They also complained about the usual harassment and demands for money by Kenya ’s security officers.

 They are scheduled to meet the UNHCR officials next month for a conclusive discussion.

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Wilfred Mulliro is Kenyan columnist. MA in International Studies from University of Nairobi, B.Ed. in English Literature from Kenyata University. His articles which focus on Social issues and Politics appear in Kenya's leading Newspapers.

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