116,000 persons staring starvation in Makueni

Residents of Matarba in Merti, Isiolo County line up to receive water from a county government tanker on March 19, 2019. [Olivia Murithi/Standard]
At least 116,000 people have been affected by drought which has been exacerbated by failure of the December rains. 

County Commissioner Maalim Mohammed said residents in 15 wards were facing starvation.

In most of the regions bordering national parks such as Tsavo West and East and Chyulu national park, the little harvest residents got has been destroyed by wild animals.

“Food security in regions that border the national parks has been negatively affected by human-wild life conflict,” said Mr Maalim.

The county commissioner said the government has a list of people who will benefit from relief food.

“Not everyone in the long queues that are usually witnessed will get the food,” he averred.

Beneficiaries’ list

He added that the Government would introduce a school feeding programme to keep learners in school even as the drought rages.

“As we speak, we have at least 290 public schools that have been put under the school feeding programme and more will be added to the programme,” Maalim said.

A spot check by The Standard in the local schools, found many had already lost a number of students.

Unoa Primary School, located on the peripherally of Wote town, and which has a population of more than 1,000 pupils, is asking for contributions to keep the learners in class.

The school head teacher Phillip Musyoki said they get food from a few able parents.

The food is then cooked for all the pupils.

“We have been able to keep pupils in school both from poor and well off families throughout the term,” said Mr Musyoki.

“This is due to the feeding programme that we introduced. It is a good idea since children who fail to eat from their homes come and take porridge and rice here.”

He also asked well-wishers to step in and help to feed the children.

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