Kajiado County has gone high-tech by launching a digital food distribution system capable of reaching over 20,000 families in record time.
The innovative system dubbed M-Riziki was launched yesterday at Ngong town by Governor Joseph ole Lenku. The governor said the app will help vulnerable poor people receive a pin sent to their phones to be able to access food from a pre-selected shopkeeper.
The app is designed by Empiris Creative Communication and Fashionnaire Corporation Ltd.
Ms Lorna Sampele, chief executive officer at the Empiris Creative Communication and Fashionnaire Corporation Ltd, said an invoice is automatically generated immediately a hamper of pre-selected food items is accessed by a vulnerable person.
It is against this that payment is automatically released to the shop owner.
The governor said the beneficiaries were selected through the local county administrative structures. Shopkeepers will download the app and use it to verify and validate the beneficiary before offering them the food allocation.
“We have decided to up our game following the Ministry of Health guidelines and regulations of social distancing and also avoiding gatherings during food distributions,” said Lenku.
The governor noted that the new digital system reduces the county logistic nightmares of food transportation to far flung areas, more so at a time when heavy flooding has cut off some villages.
“Money is tracked online, receipting, and payment to shop is online and even pre-selected beneficiaries, with no smart phone, can access the relief food,” said the governor.
The digital food distribution comes as dozens of residents in the county go hungry following prolonged drought coupled with effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
“A large number of people in rural areas cannot afford to put food on the table, let alone afford facial masks and that’s why we are working to assist them,” said Lenku.
Most affected areas are Mailua (Kajiado Central), Torosei (Kajiado West), and Ilkilunyeti in Kajiado East Sub-county.