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Isiolo pastoralists receive animal feeds as drought bites

Thursday September 19 2019

Lordman Lekalkuli

From right: National Drought Management Authority Isiolo Coordinator Lordman Lekalkuli, Isiolo Deputy County Commissioner Mohammed Maow and the County Secretary Dr Ahmed Galgalo during the flagging-off of animal feeds on September 18, 2019. PHOTO | WAWERU WAIRIMU | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

WAWERU WAIRIMU
By WAWERU WAIRIMU
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The national government has distributed Sh10 million worth of animal feeds to pastoralists in Isiolo County in efforts to mitigate the effects of the prevailing drought.

The initiative carried by the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) will feed 20,000 most affected livestock in Cherab, Kinna, Garbatulla and Sericho wards.

The county's NDMA coordinator Lordman Lekalkuli said they had partnered with Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) soldiers tasked with distributing the feeds.

ONGOING DROUGHT

Speaking during flagging off of the 6,000 bags near the Isiolo Referral Hospital, Mr Lekalkuli said they will in the next two weeks distribute more 6000 bags to the remaining six wards.

“We are aware that the animals are emaciated due to the ongoing drought and the feeds will help in cushioning pastoralists from losses,” said Mr Lekalkuli noting that a total of 100, 000 livestock are affected.

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He added, “A 50-kilo-bag is enough to take a cow for one month and goat and sheep for two months”

DROUGHT-INSIGATED CONFLICTS

Thousands of animals have been affected by the prevailing drought, forcing pastoralists to migrate to other counties in search of pastures while also causing tension at the grazing fields and watering points.

The military has offered a 20, 000 litre water truck that will serve the residents of Garbatulla and Sericho areas hardly hit by acute water shortage.

In efforts to address the challenge of acute water shortage, the county government has in the current financial year allocated Sh312 million for construction of a multipurpose dam and sinking of boreholes.

INTERVENTION

Pastoralists have started losing their animals to the drought though the official maintained that the incidences had not been reported.

Isiolo Deputy County Commissioner Mohamed Maow said the government will continue distributing relief food to the affected residents to ensure that no one dies from hunger.

“We have already distributed food in Garbatulla and Sericho areas and we will continue doubling the efforts in efforts to eradicate hunger,” said Mr Maow.

About 100, 000 residents are in dire need of food assistance according to last month’s drought assessment report that further shows that the situation is on a worsening trend compared to last month.