Monday, April 29, 2013

Cash Transfers in Somalia and the Role of Gatekeepers

The Somalia Cash Consortium has been distributing large-scale unconditional cash transfers since 2011 to vulnerable households in South Central Somalia.  Members of the consortium have had to deal with security problems and negotiate access to internally displaced person (IDP) sites through informal IDP camp authorities.  An important actor among the informal camp  managers/administrators is the "gatekeeper."

This 31 January 2013 study titled "The Somalia Cash Consortium: Gatekeepers in Mogadishu" analyses the role played by gatekeepers--positive and negative--in providing protection and basic services to IDPs.  It also looks at the perceived sources of power and the influence of the gatekeepers, their links and relationships with the government, local authorities and other community leaders.  As a result, it offers a useful perspective on the dynamics of the situation in Somalia.

The authors are Erik Bryld, managing director of Tana Copenhagen, a consultancy company; Christine Kamau, director of iDC, a Kenyan-based consultancy firm; and Dina Sinigallia, an expert with Tana Copenhagen.  The team tried to learn who the gatekeepers are, when they assumed their role and the factors that contributed to their rise. 

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