.With enormous sorrow, we report the death of Peace Direct’s Patron, Dekha Ibrahim Abdi. Dekha and Peace Direct worked closely together in our early years, pioneering with Dekha a Rapid Response Fund which aimed to deal with conflicts in the northern part of Kenya, where a few days ago Dekha was involved in a serious car accident, which killed her husband and driver, and eventually led to her death as well.
No-one who met Dekha will ever forget her. She was passionately and wholeheartedly committed to peacebuilding, from the early days of the Wajir Peace and Development Committee in the mid-1990s and equally effective working in the field, and as a trainer and facilitator. We saw at first hand how effective she was when she contriubted to our Young Muslims Speak project in 2006.Perhaps her greatest moment, professionally, was as convenor of Concerned Citizens for Peace, a group of five eminent people who came together as the violence was breaking after the 2007 Presidential elections. Over the next weeks, CCP worked tirelessly to harness the energies of ordinary citizens, university Vice Chancellors, mobile phone companies, veterans, and all the many branches of civil society who did so much, with little recognition, to prevent the violence overwhelming Kenya. I vividly remember Dekha describing this process to a group of journalists in the UK, speaking fluently and without pause for an hour, and holding them spellbound.
Dekha was awarded the Right Livelihood Award in 2007.
To find out more about Dekha’s peacebuilding work, please visit this page
Carolyn Hayman, 14 July 2011