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February 22, 2018

Hundreds of Kajiado livestock on verge of death due to drought - Lenku

A file photo of a cow dying due to drought at Olosurgon area of Kajiado North./JACK OWUOR
A file photo of a cow dying due to drought at Olosurgon area of Kajiado North./JACK OWUOR

Livestock in Kajiado are at risk of death due to drought, Governor Joseph ole Lenku said on Tuesday, noting hundreds have died.

Lenku described the situation as “tragic and life threatening.”

“On Monday my government started sending fresh water tankers to the slopes of Chyulu Hills for most of our livestock which are grazing there but that is not enough,” he told The Star by phone.

"About 70 to 80 per cent of Kajiado livestock have moved to Chyulu where the numbers are straining water sources.”

The county chief said he had talks with Devolution CS Mwangi Kiunjuri on Monday regarding hunger across the county and that the minister promised to immediately send relief food.

Mashuuru deputy county commissioner Stephen Nyakundi told The Star he counted at least 40 dead cows along Mashuuru-Sultan Hamud road on Tuesday morning.

“They die every day on this road on their way to Chyulu Hills National Park to graze. I have not seen such a catastrophe in many years,” said Nyakundi.

Among the most affected areas are the entire Kajiado West sub county, Kajiado Central and parts of Kajiado East.

Imaroro resident Nackson Letuati said most livestock owners have moved to Masimba area near Chyulu but that they are experiencing water shortage.

“There is grass on the slopes of Chyulu Hills but the biggest challenge is water and food for herders,” he said.

In Olkiramatian area of Kajiado West, where crop irrigation normally takes place, most farmers are counting losses as Ewuaso Nyiro River dried up months ago.

The river gets water from Mau Hills in Narok county and has been a source of livelihood for thousands of farmers in the West of Lake Magadi.

Read: Armyworm, drought leave 6,000 families hungry in Naivasha


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