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The East African : Nov 3rd 2014
16 The EastAfrican NEWS NOVEMBER 1-7,2014 DEVELOPMENT AND PEACE A Kenyan child in class. The UN promised to work with global and regional leaders to ensure a coordinated approach to peace, security and development. Picture: File Global lenders pledge $8b for Horn of Africa The funds will go to inf≥ast≥uctu≥e, education and p≥oviding bette≥ access to healthca≥e in the ≥egion By JEFF OTIENO The EastAfrican G lobal development lenders have pledged more than $8 billion to the Horn of Africa, underlining the importance of the region in peace and development on the continent. It was the third time a joint United Nations-World Bank team was visiting Africa in recent times to seek a lasting solution to conflicts, boost economic growth and tackle runaway poverty levels. The eight countries to benefit from the pledge are Kenya, Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, South Sudan, Somalia and Ethiopia. Speaking in Nairobi, UN Secretary General Ban Kimoon, said the world body would work with global and regional leaders to ensure a co-ordinated approach to peace, security and development. “At the same time there cannot be any lasting peace and security without development,” said Mr Ban. Though the Horn of Africa includes some of the world’s fastest growing economies, with huge untapped natural resources, the region has been dogged by poverty, war, and, in recent times, acts of terrorism besides corruption and trafficking in arms and drugs. According to a review by the World Bank, the Horn of Africa has one of the highest concentrations of displaced DONORS by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), showed that Ethiopia overtook Kenya to become Africa’s largest refugee-hosting country after hundreds of thousands of South Sudanese arrived in the country this year. The UN body predicts up to a million South Sudanese could be displaced in neighbouring countries by the end of this year. The conflicts have also led Ban Ki-moon. Pic: File The World Bank pledged $1.8 billion to be spent on major infrastructure projects; the European Union pledged $3.7 billion until 2020; the African Development Bank pledged $1.8 billion while the Islamic Development Bank committed up to $1 billion for infrastructure development and food security people in the world, with war and famine making 2.7 million people refugees and 6 million people displaced within their own countries. The four main conflicts in the region include the dispute over resources between Sudan and South Sudan, internal conflict in South Sudan, internal conflict in Somalia and lastly the dispute between Ethiopia and Eritrea. Kenya, Uganda, Sudan and Ethiopia are currently experiencing the heaviest burden of hosting thousands of refugees displaced from the conflict areas. Recent statistics released to a rise in terrorism, which has become a major threat to security not only in the Horn of Africa but also in the East African Community. President Uhuru Kenyatta said Kenya would continue to devote its resources and expertise to building a stable region. “We are guided by the fundamental understanding that together we can achieve the positive transformation of our region,” he added. The funds, according to the development partners, will help finance infrastructure development programmes, improve education and training and provide better access to healthcare in the eight countries. World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said African countries must work hard to bring peace and development to the continent. “There is a greater opportunity now for the Horn of Africa to break free from drought, food insecurity, water insecurity and conflict by building up regional security, generating a peace dividend, especially among young women and men, and spurring more cross-border co-operation,” Mr Kim said.
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