Somalia: Land evictions on the rise for IDPs in Puntland’s Garowe
Improving coordination and information management at camps Land issues in Garowe are leading to a rise in evictions among displaced people. The threat of eviction hovers over the heads of internally displaced persons (IDPs) as most of the land they live on belongs to private individuals.
Land owners demand monthly payments which most of the impoverished IDPs cannot afford, leading to a breach of the rental obligations and ultimately evictions.
ACTED began its camp coordination and camp management (CCCM) operations in Garowe and Burtinle IDP sites in 2018 and works closely with stakeholders to ensure equitable access to assistance, protection, and better services for IDP communities. The project aims at improving their quality of life and dignity during displacement while seeking and advocating for durable solutions.
The ACTED mobile response teams monitor the situation and respond to cases of eviction as they occur. The ACTED CCCM team meets with affected families and advocates for solutions by coordinating with the housing, land and property partners, local authorities and landowners. ACTED strives to achieve an effective, equitable and efficient coordinated response for IDPs that face the threat of eviction. Evicted households move to temporary shelters without water or latrines which leads to a host of other problems. In these areas disease outbreaks are common due to poor hygiene and sanitation. Adding to this, the fluctuating weather conditions, hot days and cold nights, affect the health and well-being of most vulnerable members in the camps like children under five, breastfeeding/lactating and pregnant mothers, the elderly and the sick.
When the ACTED CCCM team met members of families who were recently evicted, we found families living in flimsy shelters in areas without access to basic services such as water, health and education.
ACTED has been conducting site level coordination meetings where the camp management committees come together to share the key issues and feedback that are relayed to them by the vulnerable communities. The CCCM teams have noted massive information gaps in sector indicators, population changes, service provider changes and access to services. This information is critical to identify needs that humanitarian partners and communities themselves can address through service provision and a coordinated response. Moreover, ACTED has been engaging with landowners and gatekeepers to create an enabling environment where IDPs can live without the threat of eviction.
During one of the site visits in Camp Ajuran-Garowe, the ACTED CCCM team met Issack, a camp resident and the camp management committee leader. He pointed out the key issues in the camp and urged the teams to help create a conducive environment for service delivery, information management and most importantly, the coordination between the IDPs and other stakeholders to ensure that the vulnerable communities access the help they need. Before ACTED started its CCCM intervention in Garowe, the community lacked access to information and humanitarian services. ACTED has brought together several humanitarian organizations to cater to the rising needs of the IDP communities through providing cash, durable solutions, WASH and shelter services.
ACTED through the CCCM intervention has been able to identify some of the gaps in the IDP sites and as most households struggle to make ends meet, cash transfer programs together with other durable solutions programs are creating a ripple effect positively impacting families.