Plea for more food as drought ravages Marsabit county

Internally Displaced Persons queue to meet Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi at Marsabit Catholic Hall on June 5, 2022. At least 1000 IDPS are in need of food aid in Marsabit.

Photo credit: Jacob Walter I Nation Media Group

The number of people who need food aid in North Horr, Marsabit County, has increased as drought ravages the region, locals say.

Speaking when the World Food Programme (WFP) distributed food in the area, residents urged the government to increase the rations.

Ruge Nuno, from Bubisa location, said their suffering had been overshadowed by political campaigns.

“We still have many households in dire need of food rations in North Horr, especially the internally displaced persons who fled their homes due to ethnic conflicts,” Mr Nuno said.

He regretted that the drought in Northern Kenya had been ‘forgotten’ because the government and the media had shifted their focus to politics.

Mr Nuno said the situation was aggravated by families moving to North Horr to escape violent clashes in Saku.

He estimated that close to 200 families sought refuge in their relatives’ homes in Bubisa, Shegel, Turbi, and Maikona.

Internally displaced people lost all their property, were forcefully ejected from their homes and were compelled to start life afresh, he said.

Mzee Isacko Huqa, from the Turbi location, urged the government to increase food rations to vulnerable families.

He said that Bubisa, Turbi, Maikona and Kalacha were some of the hard-hit areas due to failed rains in three successive seasons.

Despite some parts of the country receiving short rains in the March-April-May season, Marsabit has not received a drop.
WFP Representative Mary Mwangi, who led a team of non-governmental groups, said the high number of people who need relief food had overwhelmed donors.

She asked more donors to intervene and provide food supplies to prevent loss of lives.

“We continue to appeal to all partners to extend a hand of help to the suffering households,” Ms Mwangi said.

WFP distributed 201 tonnes of maize meal, 29 tonnes of beans, and 16 tonnes of vegetable oil.

Strategic Northern Development Organization representative Elema Bati also appealed for help for Northern Kenya residents.

During a recent visit to Marsabit, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i said the government was helping those affected by drought.

He added that there were enough relief supplies to ensure no one died of starvation.

He directed the local administration to register all internally displaced people for assistance. 


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