The government will spend Sh558 million in cash transfers to cushion 100,000 vulnerable families against drought effects in four drought-stricken counties in the northern frontier.
Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa said the government will commence the cash transfers this Monday through the Hunger Safety Net Programme (HSNP) where individual households will be paid cash through the Equity bank to purchase foodstuff.
He said the funds will be disbursed to beneficiaries registered under the regular cash transfer portfolio in drought-ravaged counties of Wajir, Mandera, Turkana and Marsabit.
The CS however assured that four more counties in the region are expected to be included in the Hunger Safety Net programme and are currently registering the beneficiaries under the regular cash transfers.
Wamalwa voiced the government’s commitment to supporting the vulnerable households in the country through cash transfer, which he noted was quicker in addressing hunger among families.
He was happy to note that European Union was supporting water trucking and provision of fuel subsidy to strategic boreholes in the region through the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), a move he said will ensure provision of water at the household level.
The CS was briefing the press in Naivasha on the status of the country’s food security and the interventions that the government was putting in place to counter drought effects.
At the same time Wamalwa disclosed that 2.14 million people in the Arid and Semi- Arid (ASALS) region were in need of relief food, but assured that plans were underway to release a total of Sh 2billion under the National Drought Emergency Fund (NDEF) to support the on-going interventions.
He however appealed to County governments and other players to come out and complement the government effort to cushion the vulnerable households against the effects of the on-going drought.
By Esther Mwangi and Erastus Gichohi