Kenya provides $16 mn for drought mitigation amid hunger

Kenyan President William Ruto said in the Kenyan capital Nairobi that his government has allocated 2 billion shillings ($16.47 million) for food relief to counties affected by the severe drought across the country.

Ruto on Tuesday added that the government will also collaborate with development partners and the private sector to raise additional funds to tackle the crippling drought which has affected more than 4 million Kenyans.

“We are working with development partners to raise another 10 billion shillings ($82.36 million) to ensure no part of the country is unfairly affected by drought,” the President made the remarks while being installed as the Patron of the Kenya Red Cross Society.

The number of people in need of humanitarian assistance currently stands at 4.35 million, a rise from 4.1 million in June, according to National Drought Management Authority (NDMA), Xinhua news agency reported.

The NDMA said due to diminished pasture and water resources in most of the arid counties, mortalities across all livestock species namely camels, cattle, goats and sheep have increased.

Ruto said part of the new allocation will be channeled to support the animal offtake programme through which the government buys weak livestock from pastoralists.

The President added that half of the animals are slaughtered and the meat distributed to locals while the other half are taken to the Kenya Meat Commission where their meat is canned for distribution to schools.

Ruto said he was confident that the interventions being undertaken together with development partners and the private sector will save the lives of Kenyans in areas worst affected by the drought.

He added that the Kenya Red Cross Society will continue playing an integral role in the efforts to mitigate the drought which has affected 20 of the 23 counties categorised as Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL).

The President also announced that $1.65 million will be allocated to the Kenya Wildlife Service to undertake water trucking for wildlife in Kenya’s national parks and reserves.

He said that even as the government leads efforts to respond to the drought emergency, it remains focused on plans to ensure a constant and predictable food supply in the future.

He added that predictability in the supply of food is being ensured through the provision of cheap fertiliser and seeds, and the construction of enough dams to support irrigation among several other measures.

The President said that the government is also determined to put in place robust measures to combat climate change, which is the root cause of the adverse weather patterns around the world.




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