10 basic facts about Kenya’s Garissa County

Located in northeastern Kenya, on the Somali border, Garissa County is home to a million people and covers an area of about 45,720.2 km².

Its capital and largest urban area is Garissa, the former administrative capital of the now-defunct North Eastern Province (NEP).

Here are 10 other basic facts about Garissa County:

1. The county hosts Dadaab, the third-largest refugee complex in the world.

As of 2018, Dadaab which comprises Dagahaley, Hagadera, Ifo, and Ifo II camps, hosted 235,269 registered refugees and asylum seekers, according to United Nations figures.

2. Like other counties in the former NEP region, Garissa County is mostly inhabited by ethnic Somalis.

3. The county has six parliamentary constituencies: Garissa Township (formerly Dujis Constituency) Balambala, Lagdera, Dadaab, Fafi and Ijara.

4. Garissa is hot and dry much of the year, receiving scarce rainfall in the range of 150mm – 300mm annually.

5. The county hosts the Boni forest, a section of which is the Boni National Reserve, a protected wildlife conservation area.

6. The Garissa Community Giraffe sanctuary (GCGS) is located 3Km south of Garissa town and covers an area of around 125km² and borders the Tana River.

7. Livestock production forms a significant part of Garissa County’s economy. Between 2005 and 2007, Garissa cattle producers are said to have earned over 2 billion Kenyan shillings in sales in domestic and international markets.

8. The current governor of Garissa County is Ali Bunow Korane and it’s senator is Yussuf Hajji.

9. The county has a university, Garissa University College and a number of colleges.

10. Garissa town is located about 350 km east of Nairobi and is linked by road with the capital Nairobi and the port of Mombasa.