•The county boss said that drought mitigation efforts in the county are well coordinated and that priority areas in mobilizing the resources for drought-stricken families have been identified.
•According to the National Drought Management Authority NDMA, 420,020 people are in dire need of aid due to the ongoing drought in Garissa County.
Garissa county commissioner Boaz Cherutich has assured area residents that the government is putting up all efforts to cushion them against the hard-hitting drought and prevent any loss of life.
Just last weekend, Defense Cabinet secretary Aden Duale led other national and county government officials in distributing relief food to affected households in Shimbirey, Balambala Sub County and promised that the government would reallocate funds to help deal with the effects of drought in the country.
According to the National Drought Management Authority NDMA, 420,020 people are in dire need of aid due to the ongoing drought in Garissa County.
Garissa is among the 29 counties that have been on the receiving end of the ravaging drought. The number initially shot from 370,000 as the situation worsened.
Speaking on Monday during a press briefing on the status of drought in the county, Cherutich who co-chairs the county steering group with the governor, said that drought mitigation efforts in the county are well coordinated and that priority areas in mobilizing the resources for drought-stricken families have been identified.
The programmes in place include food distribution, cash transfer programs by NDMA and other partners, water trucking, distribution of livestock feeds, children and pregnant mothers’ nutritional programme and school feeding programme to 5 severely affected sub-counties.
Additionally, there has also been the livestock offtake program by the government and other development partners to ensure the Kenya Meat Commission buys cattle from farmers’ packages and distribute the meat to households affected by drought.
“As a county, we have been allocated 900 cattle in the livestock offtake program and have since allocated 100 to every sub-county. The farmers will make an arrangement with KMC on how to facilitate the transport of the cattle whose meat will be processed and brought back to feed school-going children,” Cherutich said
“I want to encourage all parents to ensure their children are back in school because it is important for them to continue with their studies. It will be a great loss if school-going children are at home looking after livestock,” he added.
The administrator further warned the parents against dismissing their school-going children to look after livestock during the schooling period.
“We have put in place arrangements with chiefs, village elders and ministry of education officials to identify and create a list of all out-of-school children so that action can be taken. It is wrong to deny children their right to education,” he warned.