Kenya has been experiencing drought for a while now. This has caused food shortage in some regions across the country. On February 10, 2019, the government declared a national drought emergency, with 23 of 47 counties affected. This current drought is worse than the one which plagued the country in 2011. So far, 2.6 million people are experiencing crisis levels of food insecurity in the East African country.
In a bid to ease the situation, the US through it’s USAID program has donated food aid valued at approximately $3.4 million to support Kenya’s efforts in addressing food insecurity in the country.
Kenya received a total of 18,300 metric tonnes of food assistance at the Mombasa port from the USAID Office of Food for Peace (FFP).
Over 390,000 beneficiaries from nine arid counties are expected to benefit from the aid which will be distributed by WFP through the support of the US government.
The targeted counties are Turkana, Baringo, Marsabit, Isiolo, Samburu, Mandera, Wajir, Garissa and Tana River
The food aid is part of US support to Kenya for food security relief and long-term resilience among vulnerable Kenyans which in 2019 totalled almost $102 million.
According to Kyle McCarter, the US Ambassador to Kenya, the food assistance reflects the US commitment to the health and food security of Kenyans.
“The United States is committed to addressing the needs of Kenyans suffering as a result of devastating drought and severe food insecurity in the northern and eastern regions of the country,” said Ambassador McCarter.
In partnership with USAid, WFP will also provide food or cash transfers to meet seasonal food gaps. It will also help in the building of irrigation canals, increasing fodder production, and creation of water pans to increase food production and diversify livelihoods.
Culled from www.theeastafrican.co.ke