An interview* with three women living in a slum area in Pumwani, Majengo area, Nairobi county, Kenya revealed that Commercial Sex Workers (CSW) struggle to survive and gain income due to COVID-19 lockdown. Working primarily in the streets, from homes or from hotels the current situation left many with a serious shortage of income. With markets, bars and restaurants closed and a curfew between 7pm- 5am CSWs have lost clients. Many of them are young girls and single mothers who increasingly risk homelessness and fear for their ability to provide basic needs or next meal. The financial restrains mean that CSWs take increased risks to provide for themselves and family. More dangerous clients are accepted and many of CSWs move from a more protected environment out on the streets.
International organisations such as the United Nations (UN) and the World Health Organization (WHO) face a storm of disinformation and blame surrounding their handling of the coronavirus pandemic. This includes xenophobic reactions from populations, but also political blame. The criticism is leading to obstacles for the organisations providing much-needed aid to vulnerable populations, particularly in areas of Africa, due to restricted funding and threats.
In this week’s news highlights: IOM launches COVID-19 response plan in the East and Horn of Africa; UN Solidarity Flights from Ethiopia; Surge of returnees to Ethiopia; Al-Fashaqa region returns to Sudanese sovereignty, says anonymous informant; Food shortage due to desert locust in the Horn; Eritrean priest wants to help migrants and refugees fleeing Libya; Stampede for food aid in Kenya; KIU adopts online education system: EU countries taking in unaccompanied minors from Greek camps; Malta urged to take in rescued migrants; Controversy around Italy’s quarantining of migrants; European states urged to allow refugee health workers to help; Belgium COVID-19 measure allows asylum seekers to work; Worries about missing migrant ship in Mediterranean; Migrants and refugees flee Tripoli’s quarantined port; And Libyan government (GNA) takes back control over three cities.