, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 10 – The National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) and Langata Youth Networks held peace talks for Kibera communities.
Commission Secretary Hassan Mohammed said there has been tension after the 2008 Post Election Violence and has since been aggravated with the March 4 polls.
“Both the 2008 and the March 4 general elections left some people unsatisfied some of who find it hard to move on as they are unhappy with the results but as a commission we are encouraging communities to sit and iron out issues for the sake of peace,” Mohammed said.
The 2008 Post Election Violence saw some Kibera residents evicted on basis of their ethnicity and those that were adamant to leave had their homes burnt with some even losing their lives in the fighting.
Kibera was one of the areas worst hit by the violence between communities of different ethic backgrounds.
The March 4 polls though peaceful, many Kenyans were sceptical about the polls aftermath with many saying that the wounds of the previous General Election were yet to heal.
“In Kibera, some residents still face harassment after the recent General Election as some residents refuse to pay rent to landlords or to buy from certain shopkeepers simply because of their ethic background,” explained Mohammed.
Mohammed asked the people to give peace a chance and says as a commission they are ready to provide a platform for dialogue between the warring communities.
The communities that have been at loggerheads include the Luo, Luhya, Kikuyu and the Nubians.
“The commission is ready to listen to problems and sort some of them and those they are unable to sort they will put them across to higher relevant authorities to find a quick and effective solution,” added Mohammed.
NCIC which was set up as a result of the conflict after the 2007 General Election has been accused of failing Kenyans in the peace restoration efforts.
Some people accused them of letting politicians get away with incitement and hate speech simply because of their political influence.
After the March 4 polls the country saw people take their tribal divide and dissatisfaction to the internet with some people passing on hate messages about other communities through social media.
The commission took it up and began monitoring the social media sites and created social media pages where people could report any cases of hate speech or conflicts.
To that effect, earlier this year after the March 4 polls The Ministry of Communication announced plans of a new legislation where internet users would have to register their IP (Internet Protocol) addresses as the case with the mobile phone simcards.
This project by the NCIC and the ministry is yet to begin working.
Mohammed explained that they have to tread with caution so that they leave permanent restoration solutions within the warring communities.
Mohammed asked Kenyans to give the commission a chance to work saying that they are taking time as they don’t want to reopen the wounds that are just beginning to heal.