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Jama sets up intervention team as drought looms high in Garissa.

By Yussuf Korrow

Governor Jama addressing humanitarian agencies during formation of a team to intervene ravaging drought crisis in the county at Almond hotel. PHOTO BY ABDILATIF KHULATEIN.

Governor Nathif Jama on Wednesday hold a crisis meeting with top UN bodies and other humanitarian aid organizations for immediate actions on the ravaging drought situation in the county.

Jama called for Joint efforts to set up Drought and Emergency Centers across the county, a process that will see actors to contribute towards the humanitarian kitty that will be operated by the Red Cross in collaboration with the county government and other agencies.

The Governor said it’s time to take collective responsibility to avert the looming disaster and reiterated that the intervention will reinforce already existing county disaster programs and appealed to well-wishers and the international community to join hands in order to salvage the situation.

“It is an appeal to all Kenyans of goodwill to come to the rescue of our people who are currently suffering, through personal donations to this fund,” Jama said.

The governor’s call for quick action comes a day after Governors across 47 counties pledged to contribute Sh1 million each towards drought mitigation efforts even as they pointed an accusing finger at the national government for doing little to ease the suffering of Kenyans.

The county chiefs under their umbrella, Council of Governors (CoG), recently announced they will provide Sh47 million to the Kenya Red Cross Drought Fund to help alleviate the suffering of people in arid and semi-arid areas who were facing hunger.

The governors also accused the National government of engaging in empty talks and doing little to help the people affected by the biting famine.

“Support by the National government to the affected counties is not well coordinated. The counties are not aware of the intervention being done by the government,” CoG Chairman and Meru Governor Peter Munya said

He said billions of Contingency Funds allocated to line ministries is not trickling down to affected people and Kenyans cannot feel the national government’s presence, as drought situation escalates in the Country.

Governor Jama said since the start of devolution, counties have worked hard to intervene the effects of drought through trucking water, digging boreholes and provision of relief food.

He urged National government to leave sideshow talks and start acting.

“We don’t need to wait until we start seeing images of malnourished people and cases of hunger death in affected counties to act” he said.

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