Ninety persons participated at the forum on Thursday, 14 July, ‘Security and Counter Terrorism’ was the topic, the panellists included were Ahmed Mohamed –Community Representative, Eastleigh; Abdullahi Boru Halakhe – East Africa Researcher, Amnesty International Kenya; Samson Omondi – Program Officer, Kenya National Commission on Human Rights; Tom Kagwe – Board Member, Independent Policing Oversight Authority and Hassan Omar – Senator, Mombasa County. During the debate the protection and promotion of human rights were underlined as a responsibility of the state. At the same time, the brutality and human right violations justified by the fight against terror; the lack of accountability and impunity; the lack of the presence of CSOs on the ground and their interaction with the community; the increasing xenophobia against Muslims and Somalis and the many human rights handling institutions; and the existence of a plethora of legislations were recognised as a challenge to national security.
Public Discussion Forum Security and Terrorism
On Wednesday, 20 July sixty participants discussed ‘Citizenship, Identity and Belonging’ with a panel comprising of Salah Abdi Sheikh - Kenyan writer and historian, the late Adam Hussein Adam - specialist on citizenship and statelessness - and Hon. Ken Okoth, Member of Parliament for Kibra. During the debate it was emphasised that the issue of identity documents is a colonial relic and that corruption, deliberate discrimination and xenophobia have negatively affected the already-marginalised communities such as the Nubians, Somali Kenyans and those Kenyans residing in Northern Kenya. A young Somali woman gave a harrowing account of what life is like without an identity document. Others described the endless search for one.
Public Discussion Forum Citizenship and Identity