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HOW CAN WE GO BACK WITHOUT DIALOGUE WITH ASSAILANTS

NEWS

We won’t go back, vow refugees

Story by LORRAINE ANYANGO and WANJIRU MACHARIA
Publication Date: 2008/05/06

More than 14,000 internal refugees camping at the Nakuru ASK show ground Monday vowed not return to their homes, saying that the situation was still volatile.

They demonstrated by walking round the camp as they chanted ‘Hatutoki, hatutoki, hatutaki kurudi’ (We are not leaving, we are not leaving, we do not want to go back).

At the same time, they also demanded that President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga visit them.

The angry refugees said the two leaders discriminated against the victims of clashed in Nakuru during their recent tour of Rift Valley Province.

The thousands of displaced people who have been camping at the Agricultural Society of Kenya (ASK) show ground said the Government should have reconciled them with the communities neighbouring them instead of rushing to resettle them.

“How can we go back yet we have not sat down with our assailants to chart the way forward and to discuss how we are going to live together in harmony?” Ms Beatrice Wairimu, a mother of five who was evicted from Kericho asked.

Flashing her identity card, she said that it was unfair for President Kibaki and the Prime Minister to fail to visit them at the camp and listen to the plight.

Ms Wairimu said many people who were evicted from estates in Nakuru Town were also taking refuge at the camp.

The internal refugees said they could not go back to the estates where they saw their relatives being killed and their property destroyed. They dismissed those saying that they were not genuine refugees since they did not own land in Nakuru.

Start life again

“Everything I owned was removed from my rented house and burnt. How am I expected to start life again without being compensated? “I am staying here until the Government shows me where to go,” said Mr Morris Otieno, a victim.

Meanwhile, nurses and volunteer counsellors who have been rendering their services at the two camps were also up in arms, demanding to be paid their allowances before the camps are closed down.

They said they were promised by those in charge of operations at the camps that each of them would receive a Sh500 daily allowance.

However, they said they had not received a cent since January 15.
 

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About SG

Secretary general of Chama Cha Mwananchi. This blog www.chamachamwananchi.wordpress.com, is based in Sweden.

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