Kenya: Mt. Elgon Preliminary Appeal


The Kenya Red Cross Society's mission is to build capacity and respond with vigour, compassion and empathy to the victims of disaster and those at risk, in the most effective and efficient manner. It works closely with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, which is the world's largest humanitarian organization and its millions of volunteers are active in over 185 countries.

In Brief

This Preliminary Appeal No. 1/2007 is being issued for Ksh 210,544,950 million to assist 50,000 beneficiaries for 6 months. The Appeal is based on the needs described below reflecting the information available at this time. The Kenya Red Cross Society has launched the Appeal within Kenya. For further information specifically related to this operation please contact:

- Mr. Abbas Gullet, Secretary General, Kenya Red Cross Society, Email; Phone; Fax

- Mr. Asha Mohamed, Deputy Secretary General, Kenya Red Cross Society, Email; Phone; Fax

- Mr. Ahmed Abdi, Acting Head of Department, Disaster Preparedness and Response, Kenya Red Cross Society; Email Phone; Fax

- Mr. Anthony Mwangi, Public Relations Manager, Kenya Red Cross Society, Email . Phone; Fax

All Kenya Red Cross Society assistance seeks to adhere to the Code of Conduct and is committed to the Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response in delivering assistance to the most vulnerable. For support to or for further information concerning the Kenya Red Cross Society programmes or operations, or for a full description of the Society's profile, please access the Kenya Red Cross Society Website at or the Federation's Website at

The Background

Mount Elgon is an administrative district in the western part of Kenya. The District is located on the southeastern slopes of Mt. Elgon and has Kapsokwony as its headquarters and Cheptais as its economic hub. The district has a population of 135,033 and an area of 944 sq km. The district has only one constituency, Mt. Elgon.

Table below showing the administrative divisions (1999 census)


The Situation

According to the Kenya Red Cross Society assessment, a total of 10,292 families (approx 61,752 people) have been affected as a result of land clashes in Mt. Elgon, along the Kenya-Uganda border, that erupted in December 2006. Of these, 61,752 people are Internally Displace Persons (IDPs). Those affected/displaced and living within Mt. Elgon District areas are 9,188 families, while those affected/displaced to Bungoma districts are currently 1,104 families. There are 66 families living in Tamulega in Teso District. There have been reported cases of an unconfirmed number of unaccompanied minors.

The current death toll from the clashes is 144, of which 101 died directly from the clashes and another 43 from health and other complications arising from the clashes. 115 people continue to nurse bullet wounds, panga cuts and burns in Bungoma and Mt. Elgon hospitals. Most residents have been left extremely vulnerable their houses have been burned, food stocks destroyed and their livestock and livelihood threatened. Some of the IDPs have sought refuge in Kapsokwony and Kaptama divisions within the district and in the neighbouring districts of Bungoma, Teso and Busia. Chwele, Lwandanyi and Malakisi divisions of Bungoma district and Tamulega division in Teso District are also hosting the IDPs.

The most adversely affected areas in Bungoma District are Chwele, Malakisi, Mayanja, Tamlega, Sirisia, Lwandanyi, Tulienge, Machakha and Changara. In Mt. Elgon District, the affected areas are Cheptais, Tuikut, Kopsiro, Cheskaki, Kimabole, Kaptama, Kapsokwony and Chebyuk. The land clashes are concentrated in Kapsokwony, Tuikut and Kopsiro areas of Mt. Elgon. The situation on the ground has been changing daily with more displacements being recorded regularly. With the escalation of the clashes, the current number of IDPs is expected to increase further. Tension has gripped the area as more people continue to live in fear of more attacks. Security forces have been deployed to stabilise the situation.

The IDPs are living mainly in market centres with their kinsmen or with relatives in nearby locations. Some have sought shelter in churches, schools, mosques and government institutions. In a recent assessment conducted by Kenya Red Cross Society it was noted that Huruma area is completely deserted and only a few families are staying at the market centre. Chances of families going back to their original homes are slim because of insecurity and destruction.