Kenya: Team picked to address drought in 12 counties

Devolution Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri (left) with his Finance Counterpart Henry Rotich after a joint media brief the media on the Drought and Food Security situation in ASAL counties at the Treasury Building, Nairobi. (PHOTO: ELVIS OGINA/ STANDARD)

The national government has formed an inter-ministerial team to deal with the drought situation.

Mwangi Kiunjuri, the Devolution Cabinet Secretary said yesterday the team will review the drought situation and assess the gaps in the State interventions that need to be fixed.

Speaking at a press briefing in Nairobi, Mr Kiunjuri and Treasury CS Henry Rotich revealed that 1.3 million people in 12 counties face the risk of starvation.

He added that the State will give them relief food and water, health and nutrition services and livestock disease control services. “In August, the Treasury released Sh250 million to the State department of special programmes for emergency relief food. The Ministry of Devolution has since June released Sh54 million to the affected counties to support intervention initiatives,” Kiunjuri said.


CS Rotich said the joint team will work with respective county governments, to curb duplication of intervention efforts and to ensure everybody is brought on board.

“We want to tackle the problem jointly after getting the proper costing from the joint technical team formed. The interventions must be efficient to deal with the problem decisively,” Rotich said.

Other ministries involved are Interior and Coordination, Health, Education, Agriculture and Livestock, Environment and Water and Irrigation.

Kiunjuri assured the public that the ministries will ensure no Kenyan starves, especially in the most affected counties in North Eastern and Coast Provinces.

“We would like to assure all Kenyans that the government is on top of this situation.

“There is no cause for alarm. We shall ensure that the necessary help reaches the most needy on time,” he said.

Meanwhile, distribution of relief food in Garissa County has started. County commissioner James Kianda said the exercise will carried out in all the sub-counties depending on the needs.

“We are monitoring the drought situation. Based on the assessment, the necessary intervention will be put in place. I want to assure the residents that the government is on top of the situation and no one will die of hunger,” he said.

He said the national government will mobilise and bring on board all aid agencies operating in the area with a view of consolidating the relief food distribution exercise.