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Press Releases

August 9, 2011

Conclusion of grant contract with the Republic of Kenya for the Project for Rural Water Supply (Phase II)
—One example of JICA's support for the "Horn of Africa" struggling with drought—

On August 8, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) concluded a grant contract with the Government of the Republic of Kenya for up to 609 million yen for the Project for Rural Water Supply (Phase II). This project will provide assistance for constructing at least 50 water supply facilities in the Machakos and Makueni Districts in southern Kenya, as well as assistance for strengthening the operation, maintenance and management systems of the water supply facilities through a resident participation model.

The majority of the land in the so-called Horn of Africa, which encompasses Kenya, Somalia and Ethiopia and includes the target regions of this project, is arid to semi-arid with little rainfall, and drought and food crises readily occur in this delicate region. The large-scale drought in which damage has surfaced since June of this year is an alarming situation that has seriously affected the ability of 12 million people to secure food, and resulted in large numbers of refugees from Somalia.

Through this project, the target residents will be able to secure stable water during times of drought such as the present, and this is expected to enhance their mid- to long-term adaptability to the frequently occurring droughts.

In addition, JICA has been providing assistance to alleviate the harm in the Horn of Africa as outlined below:

  • In the Dadaab refugee camp of northeast Kenya, inundated by many Somali refugees, 380,000 people had sought refuge as of July of this year, greatly exceeding the camp's capacity (90,000),[1] and approximately 1,300 more arrive each day from Somalia. The region around Dadaab is severely arid to begin with, and the sudden increase in refugees has heightened the friction and tension between area residents and refugees over water, firewood and other necessities, degrading the living environment. Since 2010, JICA has been implementing the Water Supply and Hygiene Improvement Project in Host Communities of Dadaab Refugee Camps; to alleviate the burden on local communities, it is supporting the improvement of the regional water supply through well digging, the construction of water supply facilities, strengthening of the capacity to maintain and manage those facilities and the procurement of water supply trucks.

PhotoA Dadaab refugee camp

PhotoA Dadaab refugee camp


  • On August 7, a portion (12,000 tons)[2] of the food aid (maize worth 940 million yen) that had been planned for delivery arrived in Kenya. It is expected that by increasing the food supply in Kenya and drawing attention to the fact that there is adequate food in Kenya, JICA will contribute to a drop in the price of food there.
  • Also, on August 5, JICA received a request from the Government of Kenya for emergency relief supplies, and JICA has made efforts such as providing 270 tents and 2,500 sleeping mats.
    JICA Provides Emergency Supplies to Help Refugees from Famine-Hit Areas in the Horn of Africa

The number of refugees increases every day, the damage from the drought becomes more serious. With regard to additional assistance, JICA is considering current conditions and making urgent efforts to study the situation.

Notes

  • [1] An increase of 60,000 people since the beginning of 2011.
  • [2] The remaining 13,000 tons are scheduled to arrive at the end of August.

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