Kenya: UNHCR Kenya Kakuma Operational Update, 16 – 30 April 2016


  • As at 30 April 2016, Kakuma had received 54,163 refugees from South Sudan. This brings the total registered camp population to 190,822 with South Sudanese making up 52% of the overall camp population.

- From 25 to 29 April, UNHCR facilitated the participation of 30 refugees (9 from Kakuma) in Critical Conversations, an event hosted by the French and German Cultural Centres (Alliance Française and Goethe-Institut Nairobi). The event was a platform through which perspectives from the three receiving states (Kenya, France and Germany) around refugees and migrants were discussed through screenings, panel discussions, art exhibitions, theatre and music. 

  • On 25 April, the UK Secretary of State for International Development -Justine Greening visited Kakuma. She was accompanied by Turkana County Governor Nanok, UNHCR Country Representative and WFP Country Director. Secretary Greening was able to see some of the DFID funded projects in the camp, through which the UK government funds refugee operations in Kenya in child protection, education, health, livelihoods as well as food and nutrition.

  • On 21 April, UNHCR organized the return of the first group of Somalis from Kakuma to Somalia. The volrep (voluntary repatriation) exercise was done for 28 Somalis. The exercise comes after the signing of the Tripartite Agreement between Kenya, Somalia and UNHCR in 2013 which initiated the process of facilitating voluntary return of Somali refugees to areas deemed safe for return. Some 200 Somalis have expressed interest in returning this year. There are nine areas in Southern central Somalia that are deemed safe including Mogadishu, Kismayu, Baidoa and Luuq. Districts in Somaliland and Puntland are also considered safe for return.

  • On 19 April 2016, a delegation of Swedish businesspeople from 15 companies visited Kakuma. The group led by the Ambassador to Kenya, Johan Borgstam and Trade Commissioner Robin Pettersson was accompanied by the Deputy Representative. The team came to familiarize themselves with the operation, hear from UNHCR and partners on the challenges faced and identify solutions to some of these challenges. The mission held focused group discussions with UNHCR and partner agencies in the various sectors before visiting various camp sites including Kalobeyei settlement, health facilities, and water and sanitation sites and energy.

The Associate Monitoring Officer (AMO) based at the SGBV Section in Geneva visited Kakuma from 17 to 22 April. The mission objective was to assess initiatives, impact and sustainability of SGBV prevention and response programmes put in place under the Safe from the Start Project funded by BPRM. The AMO used the monitoring tools to measure progress on 48 SGBV related indicators and met with UNHCR staff, partners, government representatives and refugee groups.


Operational Context

  • UNHCR conducts border monitoring visits to Nadapal twice a week to ensure that asylum seekers have unhindered access to asylum and are treated humanely. Emergency medical cases are transferred to African Inland Church (AIC)

  • Mission or Lopiding Hospital in Lokichoggio or to Kakuma at the main hospital.  On 30 April 401 new arrivals were transported to Kakuma from Nadapal. The movement was difficult due to the heavy rains experienced during the period which caused the seasonal rivers to flood. The pickup convoy arrived in Kakuma at 2.00 am after being blocked at Kalobeyei River for over 6 hours. The next pick up will be done in the coming week where some 370 arrivals will be transported to the camp. Currently, there are 2,225 individuals at Kakuma reception centre.

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