The government has reiterated its commitment to combating drought and other environmental-related challenges in various parts of the country through the implementation of the Disaster Risk Management Policy.
Addressing the media in Mombasa on Friday, Devolution and Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL) areas Cabinet Secretary Eugine Wamalwa said more resources will be devolved to counties to combat drought and other environmental challenges.
He cites drought, locust invasion and floods as some of the natural disasters that member countries battle out with.
“There is currently a challenge of drought, especially in Mandera, Isiolo, Garissa, Turkana among other arid areas. We need to come up with programs that will address this problem,” said Wamalwa.
He, however, noted that although Kenya has achieved considerable progress more needs to be done.
The CS further urged member states to work together in a bid to address some of the teething challenges facing the 8 states.
Wamalwa notes that the setting up of the National Drought Emergency Fund after 2019 will go a long way to alleviating the effects of drought in the country.
Meanwhile, IGAD Executive Secretary Workneh Gebeyehu, noted that 70 per cent of the land area in the IGAD region is categorized as arid and semi-arid lands.
Gebeyehu stated “It is therefore concerning that our climate projections show that the IGAD region is on the frontlines of climate change. On average this is twice as fast as the rest of the world,”
The IGAD official pointed out that most recent data from the IGAD-led Food Security and Nutrition Working Group estimates that 31 million people in IGAD member states are facing severe food insecurity.
“Over 105,000 of our brothers and sisters in South Sudan whose food security status is categorized as catastrophic. A closer examination of this crisis shows that the effects of climate changes, natural disasters and economic shocks will claim more of our people’s lives than conflict alone,” said Gebeyehu.
Wamalwa said with the country setting up the National Drought Emergency Fund in 2019 at the IGAD general assembly, this will go a long way in eradicating the impact of drought in the country.
The country is in the process of operationalizing NDEF, already the regulations are gazette.
Some of the IGAD member states include Kenya, Uganda, Djibouti, Eritrea, Somalia, Southern Sudan and Sudan.