Kenya's Red Cross suspends food aid efforts in W county

Decision by Kenya Red Cross Society follows abduction of its staff, blocking of aid trucks in Baringo county

Kenya's Red Cross suspends food aid efforts in W county

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS) on Saturday announced that it has suspended the distribution of relief food to starving residents in Baringo county and withdrawn its staff from the area after being held hostage.

Baringo county is one of the worst affected out of the 23 counties affected by the current drought in Kenya which has a total of 47 counties.

The KCRS Saturday said that there was a confrontation between residents from Baringo county that led to looting of relief food and harassment, the KRCS team was stopped by residents who accused them of supplying food to their neighbors, the Pokot people, there has been a history of interclan conflict between the Turkana people, The Tugen people, and the Pokot people.

In February alone at least eight people have been killed in the area due to interclan clashes.

KRCS Secretary general Abbas Gullet said that their vehicles carrying 96.8 metric tons of food comprising of maize flour, pulses, cooking oil and salt meant for Kapedo and Lomelo areas in Turkana county were blocked by the residents and forced to turn back.

KRCS said that ”the residents from the Tugen community accused KRCS of giving support to the Pokot community.”

“Never in the history of the KRCS have we ever been hampered from delivering our humanitarian work, we have always had access to all areas due to our neutrality and impartiality, KRCS may only resume operations when the Baringo county government guarantees safety of our staff and resources,” KRCS Secretary general Abbas Gullet said.

The area has been affected by drought which has forced over 11 million people in East Africa to starve and conflict due to interclan fights over pasture and water points.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 26 Şubat 2017, 09:41