A new report has revealed total backing of the government by Kenyans in its decision to send home all refugees.

According to the new Ipsos report, some 69 per cent of Kenyans led by Central and Rift Valley residents (at 82 and 79 per cent respectively) support the government’s decision to repatriate the over 600,000 refugees.

At the same time, the report has shown that majority of Kenyans (68 per cent) want the government to withdraw its troops from the troubled Somali nation.

This was represented by 15 per cent who want KDF withdrawn and replaced by other forces, (15 per cent) want them back even if they will not be replaced with 38 per cent saying they should be retrieved and be deployed at the borders.

“When given the stark choice of having the KDF remain or withdraw, a slight majority (54 per cent) opts for the latter, though again with a clear partisan divide, with more than twice as many Jubilee supporters opting for the ‘remain option’ (59 vs 24 per cent),” read the report.

Of all the eight regions (former provinces) North Eastern residents are however the least supportive with the decision to repatriate refugees (36 per cent) with only 19 per cent approving of the government’s deployment of KDF in Somalia.

“The question would, therefore, be: have these refugees out-stayed their welcome even among ordinary Kenyans, or does (at least much of) the public not have enough (accurate) information about the security, financial and humanitarian issues involved to make an informed decision about this?” posed the report.

Even as Kenyans are portrayed more skeptical in KDF’s mission in Somalia with 40 per cent saying it is likely to increase terrorists attack in Kenya, North Eastern region is the least threatened by al-Shabaab (41 per cent) with the Coast residents dreading the terror group more (72 per cent).

“When asked to suggest measures to reduce this threat, a plurality (33 per cent) support the withdrawal of troops, but the next most frequently mentioned measure is that their number be increased (20 per cent),” the report read.

It added: “These two measures are followed by “enhancing intelligence” (15 per cent), “building a border wall” (10 per cent), and “reducing corruption” (eight per cent).”



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