The effects of a long drought in Garissa county will not be wiped out overnight by the heavy rains that have been pounding parts of the area in the last week.
A giovernment agency says it will take at least two weeks for the rain’s overall effect to be felt by the pastoralists who have suffered from the biting drought that has ravaged the area for the past one year.
Talking to KNA on phone, area National Drought and Management Authority (NDMA) coordinator Abdinoor Dubow said that the rains were experienced in some parts of Fafi and Dadaab sub-counties whereas Balambala and Lagdera that were the worst hit sub-counties did not receive any rains.
We are not yet off the hook despite the rains. Water may be available for now but pasture needs a minimum of at least 2 weeks for grass to re-generate and sustain livestock, Abdinoor said.
Abdonoor however noted that there are signs that the rains may spread to Balambala, Dadaab and Lagdera sub-counties and bring huge relief to pastoralists who have since left the area in search of water and pasture in neighbouring counties.
The drought that has left hundreds of livestock dead forced pastoralists to cross over to neighbouring counties, war torn Somalia and Ethiopia in search of water and pasture.
The communities who depend entirely on livestock have not been spared either with some loosing almost their entire sources of livelihood.
Garissa county commissioner James Kianda speaking separately said the national government in collaboration with the county administration and other aid agencies has scaled up water trucking in the sub-counties that are worst hits.
The military have joined in the water trucking by allocating tracks to provide water in Masalani, Modogashe, Fafi to ensure that those still in dire need of water are reached, Kianda said.
Kianda further said that distribution of relief food is also ongoing alongside vaccination of livestock all meant to mitigate on the effects of the biting drought.
Although there were fears that some of the families who fled the biting drought could have moved with some of the candidates, the government had put in place intervention measures that ensured that all those who registered for KCPE this year sat for the exam.
Source: Kenya News Agency