62,000 bags of maize issued to Kilifi, Tana River starving locals
‘By next month, we expect to harvest 70,000 bags of maize from 2,500 acres. Next year all 10,000 acres will be under crop, expected harvest is 560,000 bags of maize
The government has started distributing maize from the Galana-Kulalu harvest to starving residents in the worst-hit counties at the Coast.
Water and Irrigation CS Eugene Wamalwa and his Devolution counterpart Mwangi Kiunjuri handed over 62,000 bags of maize to residents of Tana River and Kilifi counties facing starvation.
Wamalwa on Friday said with the ongoing harvest in the Galana-Kulalu scheme, up to 130,000 bags of maize will be supplied to the state departments of Special Programmes to feed Kilifi, Tana River, Mombasa, Lamu, Taita Taveta and Kwale residents until March.
“By next month, we expect to harvest at least 70,000 bags of maize from 2,500 acres. Next year all the 10,000 acres will be under crop, with an expected harvest of 560,000 bags of maize worth Sh1.7 billion,” he said.
Kiunjuri said out of the 23 counties facing starvation, 14 require government support to get at least one meal a day.
Four counties face acute starvation and the government must sustain them for three meals a day.
“In a normal situation, 30,000 bags of maize are needed to feed 1.5 million people but with the current drought, this has doubled in the last four months,” Kiunjuri said.
“We will be monthly providing 2,000, 90kg bags of maize and 1,000 bags of rice and beans to residents of Ganze, which has been adversely affected by drought.”
He urged governors to open up stores to jointly operate and speed up distribution in the affected counties.
The ministers gave 1,200 bags of maize and six water bowsers at Jaribuni Primary School in Ganze subcounty, Kilifi.
Tana River Governor Hussein Dado said about 97,500 households would benefit from the relief food.
Governor Hussein Dado, Water CS Eugene Wamalwa and his Devolution counterpart Mwangi Kiunjuri distribute maize in Tana River during the handing over of 62,000 bags of maize to the Special Programmes department for the drought affected counties on Friday