DP William Ruto Refutes Reports of Hunger Deaths in Turkana
DP William Ruto on Monday denied reports of deaths in Turkana and Baringo counties over the prevailing drought situation.
Issuing an update over the hunger situation, Ruto indicated that although 865,000 people require urgent relief, the deaths reported in Baringo, Tiaty and Turkana were not drought related.
Flanked by CSs Mwangi Kiunjuri (Agriculture), Simon Chelugui (Water) and Eugene Wamalwa (Devolution and ASALs), the DP indicated that contrary to this narrative, the county governments were already carrying out the first line of intervention before the national government could step in.
“There should be no cause for alarm. The National and County governments have put into place measures to ensure there are no casualties as a result of this drought,” he stated.
To intervene further, the DP indicated that Ksh2 billion would be released immediately to supply food and water to starving Kenyans in 12 counties hit by the drought.
“The vegetation situation, body condition of livestock and availability of food in the country acts as an indicator on when to carry out the intervention,” Ruto stated.
The DP invited the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) CEO to further debunk the media reports on hunger-related deaths.
“The deaths were there, but experts have not been able to directly link the deaths to drought, maybe sickness and other issues,” he stated.
The NDMA CEO indicated that the current scenario was not an emergency drought situation as was the case in 2017.
“The livestock is in good condition in most places, the pasture is not completely depleted and the livestock prices are still normal.
“Looking at all these factors, we are convinced that unless we get other reports, what we have now does not indicate any deaths as a result of drought,” he concluded.