- According to the Meteorological department, the weather outlook projects depressed rainfall across all ASAL counties.
- About 4.35 million Kenyans in 10 counties will need humanitarian assistance by October as drought continues to wreak havoc.
Garissa Governor Nathif Jama has appealed for more support to avert a severe drought crisis.
Speaking in Garissa town on Wednesday during a press briefing, Jama said that, as of now, counties can do very little to assist their people due to lack of funds.
The county chief was recently elected to chair the ASAL committee on the Council of Governors
Kenya Red Cross Society said 378,000 people are staring at starvation as the number continues to increase by the day.
The agency said if it does not rain in October, November and December, then the number of those affected will rise to 420,000, which translates to half the population of the county.
According to the Meteorological department, the weather outlook projects depressed rainfall across all ASAL counties during the October-December 2022 rainfall season due to La Nina. This presents the prospect of a fifth failed rain season.
About 4.35 million Kenyans in 10 counties will need humanitarian assistance by October as drought continues to wreak havoc.
“We are in very difficult times with regards to the drought not only in Garissa but in the entire region. We are doing whatever we can notwithstanding the circumstances that we find ourselves in,” Jama said.
Among the counties affected are Garissa, Isiolo, Mandera, Samburu and Kajiado.
Others are Tharaka Nithi,Turkana,Wajir,Laikipia,Tana River and Marsabit.
The county chief said it was unfortunate that the drought was coming at a time when governors are going through a transition period.
“We have not even received our first allocation as incoming governors. We are disadvantaged in terms of the transition that we are going through. So you can imagine a situation like this where we don’t even have funds to address these kind of eventualities,” Jama said.
He asked President William Ruto to declare drought a national disaster, saying that would give more attention and support not only from the national government, but other partners and donor community.
“After it is declared a national disaster then we will expect the national government which has the bigger budget and resources to fully provide support,” he said.
“As a county what we are facing is a situation where we have no had a rainfall for four consecutive rain seasons. Our people are loosing their livestock everyday.”
The governor said there was need to upscale water tracking and enhancing relief food distribution to the affected populations as a short-term measure.
“As leaders from the Frontier Counties Development Cooperation (FCDC), prior to our Council of Governors meeting in Mombasa, we had a brief meeting with the World Bank country directors and what we are saying is that we must have long-term solutions,” he said.
Jama also said that among the issues discussed was dry land farming, which he said should target drought mitigation.
(edited by Amol Awuor)