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Somali-Kenyans: Sixth Largest of Kenya’s 44 Ethnic Groups


Thursday, September 02, 2010

The average Kenyan woman is having 4.6 babies, pushing up the country’s population by a million people every year. As a result, the population now stands at 38.6 million nationally, up from 28 million in 1999.

But it is the growth in population of the Somali community, now Kenya’s sixth largest community, that is most noticeable in the results of the 2009 census figure released by Planning Minister Wycliffe Oparanya on Tuesday.

At nearly 2.4 million people, Kenyan Somalis are now classified as more than the Kisii (2.2 million) and the Mijikenda (nearly two million). Census results released by Kenya’s Planning Ministry show Kenyan Somalis are the sixth most populous ethnic group with 2,385,572 people, behind the Kikuyu, Luhya, Kalenjin, Luo and Kamba.

North Eastern Province has grown from 371,391 in 1989 to the present 2.3 million people.The sharp rise in the population of Somalis is due to a high birth rate. The Immigration ministry said it was not due to the influx of refugees from war-torn Somalia, as advanced by some experts. Immigration Minister Otieno Kajwang’ ruled out the influx of refugees saying there were not more than 350,000, most of whom are in refugee camps and were counted.

Source: Daily Nation