Kakuma News Reflector – A Refugee Free Press

Letter from the Editor

Posted in Letter from the Editor, Opinion by KANERE on December 31, 2016

Dear KANERE readers,

It’s been many months without publication from us and this has been due to continued challenges over material support but we are back on reporting again.

Every time a new edition is out, it’s an anticipation for the voiceless camp resident. This is the thing we do, to provide uncensored stories and counter humanitarian propaganda on many issues surrounding refugee protection, by reporting facts or exposing some of the failures in the refugee operation.

In this edition, we bring diverse stories from across the camps but limited to a more critical coverage of the news items that don’t get reported in other media outlets.

There are stories as from late July where a refugee woman and her son died in a planned fire incident in the camp following a failure in the protection mechanism by the camp authority.

A story where a refugee child died in an aggressive road accident that involved a speeding humanitarian vehicle within the camp settlement vicinity was heartbreaking to many.

Additionally, a new way of census taking was launched by UNHCR through the Biometric Identity Management System (BIMS). The process emerged with new techniques and sophisticated software machines that record fingerprints and iris scanning of refugees.

And yet, KANERE met with a group of artist volunteers from Clowns Without Borders while they were bringing too much fun to school going refugee children in the camp. Our reporters followed them to their shows and interviewed the artists on why they came to Kakuma, and included their narrative in this edition.

A story on Kakuma’s fraud cases and a few others are lined up for you. Stay tuned until the next issue of KANERE for more vibrant coverage in the new year.

We would like to welcome your opinions and expert contributions by writing to us at – kakuma.news@gmail.com

The KANERE Editorial Board and the team, wish you a happy new year 2017.

Sincerely,

Qaabata Boru

Editorial Executive – KANERE

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I Hate My Tribe

Posted in Arts, Opinion by KANERE on December 31, 2016

By Addisu

A tribe is a group of people, often who live together sharing the same language, culture and history, especially those who do not live in towns or cities. (Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, 3rd edn.)

According to me, in relation to modernization and social integration of global society, tribal sentiment is a backward idea that can vanish in the process of civilization.

Look at the above definition of tribe which says “Tribe is … those who do not live in towns or cities.” For those who live in rural villages in their tribe, their tribe matters a lot than – their nationhood – because their tribe is their world. It would be an amazing question to a ‘White Man’ (a European or North American) if you ask them what is their tribe. This is not because they never had a tribe but they passed the tribal stage of human evolution and abandoned their tribe long, long ago through civilization and urbanization to the extent that this question surprises them. Today, they (western civilized societies) do not have a tribe but a race of civilized people, and that is where the global society is heading to.

Civilization coupled with digital technology has speeded up the global social integration of peoples of different cultures. We are a global community who share languages, cultures, values, etc.

If we look at the origin of conflicts especially in Africa, they often have an ethnic dimension and are deeply rooted in tribal divisions. The decades-long conflict in South Sudan is one good example.

Tribalism is a precursor of racism; and a tribalist is a racist in a broader view. If we are tribalist, why should we blame others for being racist?

If we use our tribe to discriminate against, marginalize, and/or to promote hatred against others who are not our tribesmen, then do not ask me my tribe. I HATE MY TRIBE.

Community Talking Point: Introduction of Bamba Chakula

Posted in Community and Culture, Humanitarian Services, Opinion by KANERE on February 13, 2016

KANERE talks to beneficiaries of food aid in Kakuma: (more…)

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New approach to refugee camps

Posted in Contributors, Human Rights, Opinion by KANERE on February 13, 2016

By Kathleen Agena – thelindusinstitute@earthlink.net

This tragic scenario can be avoided if a more realistic approach to the refugee crisis is adopted. (more…)

Letter from the Editor December 2014

Posted in Opinion, Uncategorized by KANERE on December 25, 2014

It’s been a couple of months since our last edition, but we are back to reporting with a few but critical items of coverage on Kakuma.

Kakuma has had very negative happenings in the recent months and there’s been no easy solutions to such. It was devastating, it was sad when communal violence erupted like a volcano between the ethnic communities, mainly the Dinkas and Nuers of South Sudan, before escalating to other nationalities. It was ugly and unprecedented killings that took place in this camp. More than twenty people were killed, hundreds injured and thousands displaced. We have included an in-depth story that features the murders and unfolding of the violence.

It seems to be the nature of Kakuma to be a place which is full of problems! The environmental problem is added to manmade problems, to cause underlying poverty made worse by other natural phenomena. On Friday, 21 November, at least three refugees died as a result of floods in the camp. The heavy downpour destroyed a dozen houses made of loose soil exposing refugees to hazardous weather conditions, while some refugees who died in the flood were not been identified.

There has been a cut in rations for nearly two months now. It is a nightmare for thousands of the camp residents who have no other option for staying alive. It’s irrational, when you warehouse people for decades, controlling their movements and nurturing them to fully depend on aid. And yet eventually, as if you’re wakened from a deep sleep you happen not to have any food in the store for them! Refugees view the ongoing hunger as a gross failure of accountability in providing food as a basic human right that every human being is entitled to by UN – World Food Program.

Quite simply, this is the impact of warehousing! There are speculations that the next catastrophe would be the lack of life saving drugs in the refugee hospital. Anyone could guess what would happen in such a scenario! Yet, every year, the camp has received unknown billions of aid dollars that were never disclosed to the beneficiaries. There are many theories about the game of the aid industry both from the refugees and the international community, because the principles on paper contradict the facts and reality on refugee protection on the ground.

In spite of less emphasis than usual, the sixteen days of gender activism were ‘celebrated’ by several humanitarian NGOs in supporting the campaigns to shed light on gender based violence and children’s rights. In commemoration of these major days that were observed internationally, a story on the refugees living with disability, with their first hand views is included in this edition.

As we would strive hard to report in the new year, we are asking our readers to take action on each story by creating publicity on the refugees’ situation and supporting the work of KANERE from within the camp.

We are looking forward to your comments, suggestions and article contribution to a free press. We would like to consider well balanced, informative stories with value on refugee affairs.

KANERE’s editorial would like to wish you happy holidays and Merry Christmas!

Qaabata Boru

The editor

 

Open Letter to the UNHCR Office

Posted in Arts, Opinion by KANERE on August 16, 2014

Friday, April 18, 2014

To the Office of UN – High Commissioner for Refugees, Switzerland, Geneva.

Subject: Arbitrary arrest and deportation of refugees in Nairobi (more…)

Rights Violation Under Warehousing – By Brett Shadle

Posted in Contributors, Human Rights, News Updates, Opinion by KANERE on January 8, 2014

Do refugees have the right to know about the impacts of decision making on their futures, lives as they live in limbo? (more…)

Perceptions of Aid Organizations in Kakuma Refugee Camp

Posted in Opinion by KANERE on August 21, 2011

By Michele James-Deramo, Virginia Tech

Introduction: Uncovering Voice

In the book What is the What? author David Eggers gives voice to Valentino Achak Deng, who escaped violence in his village of Marial Bai and joined the walking boys in a journey from the southern Sudan, to asylum in Ethiopia and Kenya, and eventually to third country resettlement in the United States.  The novelized memoir, written as a litany that moves between the challenges of his new life in the United States and the perils of displacement, flight and encampment, serves to also bring the reader into places remote and foreign to Westerners: specifically, the refugee camp.  Much of Valentino’s formative years were spent in camps — first at Pinyudo, a makeshift camp along the Gilo River in Ethiopia and later at Kakuma, a UNHCR site where he was officially registered as a refugee. (more…)

Opinion: Being a Refugee in Mind and Life

Posted in Opinion by KANERE on November 8, 2010

Being a refugee is not an easy matter; it exerts strong impact on different aspects of life and mental peace. (more…)

Community Talking Point: What do you think of government involvement in camp life?

Posted in Community and Culture, Opinion by KANERE on November 8, 2010

What do you think of the Kenyan Government involvement in management of the camp, the security situation, decision-making bodies, and refugee feedback mechanisms? (more…)

The Forest Has Changed But The Monkeys Are Still The Same

Posted in Opinion by KANERE on June 30, 2010
An Angry opinion piece by Kumsa Keno a Refugee contributor to KANERE from Kakuma, A message on the world Refugee Day. (more…)

A LOOK AT THE QUEST OF THE ASYLUM SEEKERS IN KENYA

Posted in Opinion by KANERE on June 30, 2010

A contribution opinion piece by John perkin’s (journalist student) asking the question on the efficiency and accountability of the rescuing Agency?

Writing as a non-Kenyan and non-refugee, the author nevertheless offers some thoughts about the process of becoming a refugee in Kenya.  (more…)