Sh2bn drought relief for victims, says Duale
‘Military, NYS and water service boards will mobilise resources and we will dispatch at least 80 water bowsers to the counties’
The state will spend up to Sh2 billion to cushion 1.3 million Kenyans from the biting drought, National Assembly majority leader Aden Duale has said. He told MPs on Wednesday that the government will launch a large-scale intervention programme next week.
“The military, NYS and water service boards will mobilise resources and we will have at least 80 water bowsers dispatched to the affected counties by next week,” Duale said.
MPs called for immediate humanitarian intervention. They adjourned House Business to debate the looming crisis, which has left millions staring at a slow and painful death from starvation and dehydration.
They blamed the crisis on poor planning by the national and county governments, which they accused of perennial knee-jerk reactions to desperate situations.
The state says Kilifi is the worsthit by the drought followed by Kwale, Tana River and Taita Taveta counties at the Coast. Other counties include Garissa, Isiolo, Kajiado, Kitui, Makueni, Mandera, Marsabit, Pokot, Samburu, Turkana and Wajir.
Mandera North MP Noor Mohammed, chairman of the Agriculture committee, said the situation is devastating and requires immediate response.
“Resources have never been enough. The government should not wait until the situation gets out of hand to declare it a national disaster. It should rise up and mobilise resources,” he said.
Noor urged the two levels of government to launch a joint operation. “Let us have a process that is coordinated from one centre rather than fragmented approaches by different sectors,” he said.
Wajir woman representative Fatuma Ibrahim said, “What we are doing is reactive intervention instead of well-laid strategies to cushion farmers. Drought is a natural phenomenon, but we can mitigate that.”
National Assembly majority leader Aden Duale during a media briefing at Parliament on March 31