Donors Suspend Aid to Kenya

Posted on 31 January 2008. Filed under: Development, Economy, Governance, Insecurity, Politics |

The post-election violence that has gripped Kenya for the last one month has started taking toll on the economy. The Scandinavian countries namely Norway, Sweden and Finland have already suspended aid worth millions of euros to one of the key government programmes-Government Justice Law and order Sector Reform (GJLOS) programme being implemented by the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs. The programme was initiated in 2005. Government departments to be affected by this move include the judiciary, the police, prisons, Kenya National Commission on Human Rights and the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission.

The suspension of aid comes as a protest to failure by the government to solve the violence that has rocked the country following the December 2007 general election, which the opposition felt was rigged in favour of incumbent president Mwai Kibaki. According to Jacques Cartens, the chief technical co-ordinator of the programme, the decision to suspend aid was short term and could be reviewed regularly depending on the prevailing circumstances. The decision comes in the wake of threats by other major donors-the European Union, the US and the UK to withdraw funding to Kenya if the crisis is not resolved immediately.

Sweden, the major donor to the programme has confirmed the suspension awaiting current peace initiatives being spearheaded by the African Union. “We are not going to enter into new contracts with the government following the current political crisis”, said Swedish ambassador Anna Brandt, expressing concern at the violence that has taken an ethnic dimension. Several donors have also declared that it will not be business as usual in Kenya as long as the chaos persist. It may be recalled that only President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda has so far congratulated Kibaki over his controversial win of a second presidential term.

Meanwhile, Britain has shipped back its military equipment that had arrived at the port of Mombasa for the UK military training. Every year, British soldiers come to Kenya for military drills following an agreement with the government. “We have a memorandum of understanding with the British government where its soldiers come to train in the country. The equipment they had brought was to replace the older ones”, said military spokesman Bogita Ongeri. For the last 50 years, the British Army has used the eastern Kenyan towns of Archers Post and Dol Dol for military training with about 3000 soldiers arriving in the country annually. But following the post-election crisis in Kenya, the British government has decided to recall the equipment.

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[…] The Razor wrote an interesting post today on Donors Suspend Aid to KenyaHere’s a quick excerptThe post-election violence that has gripped Kenya for the last one month has started taking toll on the economy. […]

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