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MET WARNS OF RESPIRATORY AILMENTS

Rainy season ends, cold weather takes over this week

Rains will be concentrated in Western and Coastal regions.

In Summary

• The rainfall expected in Western Kenya will be beneficial in terms of crop performance, particularly in the North Rift.

• Despite the good rains since April, the country is still likely to face food shortage this year, according to the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa.

The rainy season is over
The rainy season is over
Image: FILE

The long-rains season will now be replaced by cold and dry weather in most parts of the country, according to the Meteorological department. 

Met said beginning this week, only some areas around the Lake Victoria, the Rift Valley Highlands, the Coastal Strip, and parts of western Turkana will continue receiving rainfall.

"The highlands east of the Rift Valley (including Nairobi county) are likely to experience cool and cloudy conditions," Met director Stella Aura said.

 

This brings an end to the three-month long-rains season.

Met said most parts of the country received adequate amounts during the March-May season, which spread into June.  

"The distribution, both in time and space, has been generally good," Aura said.

In July, rainfall will be mainly concentrated over the Western and the Coastal regions of the country.

The rainfall expected in western Kenya will be beneficial in terms of crop performance, particularly in the North Rift.

Met also expects cases of respiratory diseases like asthma, pneumonia and common colds to increase next month due to the predicted chilly weather.

However, despite the good March-May rains, the country is still likely to face food shortage this year, according to the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa.

 

In the report by AGRA on food security outlook in Africa, because of low food reserves, heavy rains and the ongoing desert locust invasion, Kenya is likely to face food shortages.  

“Consequently, increased demand for food imports combined with supply chain delays is likely to lead to food price inflation,” the May report states.  

It showed that the food security situation has been worsened by the Covid-19 pandemic and desert locust infestation that have reduced food distribution efforts and led to significant food losses.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture, the country’s maize stocks declined by 25 per cent in May, with the country closing the month with about 315,000 metric tonnes of maize.

The report indicated that domestic maize consumption levels were higher than local production indicating low food availability in the country.

Agriculture CS Peter Munya told the Senate Committee on Agriculture that maize in the country’s Strategic Grain Reserves is unfit for human consumption as it has been contaminated by aflatoxin.

The loss comes as the country is still struggling with a locust invasion and the effects of the coronavirus, both of which have hurt the country’s food chain as markets are closed and movement remains restricted in some counties.

In response, Kenya plans to import two million bags of white maize for human consumption and two million bags of yellow maize for animals feed between the end of June and mid-July.