NAIVASHA, July 25 (Xinhua) -- Kenya's National Drought Management Authority has warned of a dry spell between August and December across the country which could lead to severe food insecurity.
The warning was given as the number of counties currently affected by drought rose from eight to ten. "The National Drought Management Authority has new data that indicates that the current drought situation could get worse between August and December hence the need for action," said Eugene Wamalwa, cabinet secretary for the Ministry of Devolution and Arid and Semi-Arid Lands, on Saturday night.
Wamalwa identified 10 counties including Garissa, Isiolo, Kilifi, Mandera, and Samburu as the ten counties hardest hit by the drought.
He said that the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nation had committed 1.5 billion shillings (about 13.86 million U.S. dollars) while the European Union had pledged 4. 6 million U.S. dollars to provide assistance to households affected by drought.
Wamalwa said that in July, the state released about 4.5 million U.S. dollars through the Hunger Safety network targeting about 100,000 vulnerable families affected by the drought.
"In August we shall release a similar amount to assist those affected and we are keen on building the communities' resilience as part of mitigation measures," said Wamalwa.
He said that the construction of three mega-dams in Turkana, West Pokot and Marsabit counties were at an advanced stage in a bid to fully address the perennial shortage of water.
"We have come to learn that water pans dry fast and are not effective in addressing the water crisis in the semi-arid counties and we are now opting for major dams," said Wamalwa. Enditem