Biting drought: State says timely interventions will avert humanitarian crisis

The Government has assured Kenyans that adequate measures are in place to alleviate the negative impact of the ongoing drought in parts of the country.

Specifically, the state is vowing to ensure no Kenyan’s life is hurt by the vagaries of erratic weather patterns being experienced in some areas.

“Sufficient resources have been mobilized, and shall be up­-scaled, should there be need to do so.” Government spokesperson Col. (Rtd) Cyrus Oguna said Wednesday.

While delivering an update on the drought situation in the country, Col. Oguna disclosed that President Uhuru Kenyatta’s administration has up-scaled intervention efforts through the provision of assorted relief assistance to the affected families

Some of these interventions made by government so far to avert a humanitarian crisis include food distribution, where the Kahs. 1.2 billion has been used to get food to affected counties since the beginning of the month.

“Another Ksh.1.2 billion has been mobilized for the month of November 2021. Food distribution by Counties is as indicated in the attached table.” Col. Oguna said

Oguna adds that “with the deployment of this intervention, we want to assure Kenyans that the Government is fully in control of the situation.”

At the same time, Oguna indicated that support from Kenya’s development partners has been trickling in. The European Union (EU), for instance, has availed Ksh.500 million to be used to aid in intervention.

He says, so far, over Ksh.260 million has been spent in education, health and nutrition, livestock feeds, security and water trucking.

“FAO has availed Ksh.380 million, and has also bought 32,000 bags of cattle feeds which have already been distributed to the affected areas.” Oguna stated

And that’s not all, the World Food Programme (WFP) according to Oguna is set to mobilize Ksh.500 million to aid in the provision of assorted relief.

He noted that the UN system in the country launched Flash Appeal for local and international help amounting to USD 13.9 million.

At the same time, Col. Oguna says County Governments in collaboration with the National Government have continued to distribute water for domestic and livestock use to the affected regions.

Through the Inua Jamii programme, the government says over 1 million households countrywide have been receiving cash transfer of Ksh.2,000 per month to protect the elderly, orphans and PWD.

After close monitoring, the state established that half of the counties have been affected by the drought. But still, the situations in these counties vary.

“Group 1 are Counties with a high risk of severe drought, hence requiring a high cost of response mechanism. The Counties are Garissa, Isiolo, Kilifi, Kitui, Mandera, Marsabit, Samburu, Tana River and Wajir.” Oguna said

Counties falling in Group 2 are drought risk is moderate, and the cost of response is also moderate. These include Baringo, Turkana, Kajiado, Kwale, Laikipia, Lamu, Makueni, Meru, TaitaTaveta, TharakaNithi and West Pokot.

Lastly, Group 3 counties are those that experience a low risk of severe drought. These are Embu, Narok and Nyeri.

Oguna says the plan for intervention beyond December 2021 is ready as Government continues to mobilizes resources to mitigate the situation.

  

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