Kenya

Context

Interpeace’s partner in Kenya, the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC), was established to help build lasting peace in Kenya following the 2008 post-election crisis. The crisis was caused by disputed presidential elections in December 2007, which caused deadly violence, mainly perpetrated along ethnic lines. The NCIC is a government agency mandated to foster lasting peace and cohesion between Kenya’s various ethnic communities. Interpeace and the NCIC signed a Memorandum of Understanding in November 2014, formalizing a partnership that enabled them to collaborate on the Mandera pilot programme. The partnership has made it possible for Interpeace to share more than two decades of peacebuilding experience with the NCIC. The security situation in Mandera County, where Interpeace has implemented a peacebuilding initiative since 2016, has improved despite intermittent clan clashes and small-scale cross border terror attacks that exacerbate an already fragile environment. The terror attacks are mostly perpetrated by the Somali militant group Al Shabaab, which is opposed to Kenyan military involvement in Somalia. In 2017, the NCIC and Interpeace published a report, based on the findings of a consultation process to establish the challenges to peace in Mandera County, as perceived by the local communities of the County, entitled: Voices of the People: Challenges to Peace in Mandera County. In a recent report entitled: “Footprints of Peace: Consolidating National Cohesion in a Devolved Kenya 2014-2018” the NCIC recommended the adaptation of the PAR approach and lessons learned from the Mandera programme as a model for locally owned and locally driven peacebuilding architectures in all the 47 counties of Kenya. In 2018 Interpeace and NCIC consequently conducted a rapid fragility and resilience assessment in the Wajir and North Rift regions of Kenya, since these regions face significant peace and security challenges. This resulted to scaling up of the peacebuilding approach in 2019, in the Kerio valley across the county borders of Turkana, West Pokot, Elgeyo Marakwet, Baringo and Samburu.

Goal


The programme’s goal is to contribute advancing peace, security and development in fragile Counties in Kenya by transforming grassroots communities into agents of peace, capable of managing their conflict through non-violent means.

Initiatives


Strengthening cross-clan collaboration

In April 2018, the Mandera Peacebuilding Programme facilitated the safe return of 19,000 people displaced in an upsurge of fighting and killings between the Degodia and Garre clans in Banisa Sub-County. Following the displacement of 32,000 people in the conflict, the peacebuilding team mobilized an all-inclusive, cross-clan peace process that brought together 252 stakeholders with the objective of...



Promoting co-existence through film

The programme has used Audio-visual documentary film as a critical tool for the documentation and dissemination of its peacebuilding efforts – film has been used as a conflict early warning and prevention tool. Through film screenings, out-of-reach rural communities have been informed of cross-clan agreements and the research findings on the challenges and solutions to peace in Mandera. The film...



Fostering the role of women in peacebuilding processes

To promote the positive role women can have in building peace, the peacebuilding team mobilized 25 women who are opinion leaders to participate in the Banisa intervention. These women were able to share their opinions and concerns around sexual harassment and assault with security officials, leading to a recognition on the part of leaders that the participation and engagement of women in peacebuil...



Supporting youth platforms for leadership in peace, reconciliation and governance

As part of our objective to support cross-clan initiatives to prevent radicalization, promote conflict management and address community security concerns, the programme works with a select group of youth leaders to reinvigorate a youth platform named the Mandera County Vital Voices Network (MCVVN) for leadership in peace and reconciliation. In 2018, the youth platform organized 72 youth-led dialog...



Addressing violent extremism

The Mandera programme has been the lead agency steering discussions around the development of the Mandera County Action Plan on Countering Violent Extremism (CVE). This was attributed to its known expertise in Participatory Action Research (PAR). Furthermore, the Mandera programme has led an effort to improve relations and trust between security agencies and the local communities, particularly ...


Resources