The Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (KESSHA) Nyeri Chapter has appealed to both the national and county governments to consider day secondary schools during the distribution of relief food to those affected by drought.
According to KESSHA Nyeri chapter chairman, Cyrus Wachira, 70 per cent of secondary schools in Nyeri are day schools situated in the remote parts of the county most of which were currently dealing with a food crisis occasioned by drought.
Wachira said that situation has been made worse by the loss of livelihood by the parents who depend on agriculture as their main source of livelihood.
“We have recalled students back to school so that they can continue with learning, because we found out that school is the only place they can be assured of having at least one meal in a day,” he said.
Without a stable income due to failed rains many parents are not able to raise money for food, so we are appealing to the national government to also consider these schools in the supply of relief food,” he said.
The chairman was speaking at the county governor’s office when he led other KESSHA officials in donating maize flour worth Sh250,000 to the County Famine Relief Coordination Committee.
At the same time, KEPSHA has also donated assorted food items and clothes to the committee.
The aid included potatoes, cabbages, beans, maize flour, bananas and rice which will be distributed to vulnerable families in need of humanitarian assistance.
In his remarks, Nyeri governor, Mutahi Kahiga, said that the county was still in need of relief food assistance.
Kahiga noted that more than 130,000 people in Nyeri are still in need of urgent humanitarian assistance with Kieni-East and Kieni-West sub-counties being the most affected areas.
The governor noted that the First Lady, Rachel Ruto, had pledged to donate 32,000 tonnes of food items to the county.
He said that the aid is expected in the county on Thursday this week, adding that Kieni constituency will be prioritized during the distribution process.
To further cushion the hunger stricken families, Kahiga said that the County Famine Relief Coordination Committee had already started the process of vetting tenders for the purchase of relief food worth Sh12 million.
Similarly, he said that the county department of agriculture was in the process of instituting long term measures to ensure that the county is food secure.
“The committee has raised over Sh12 million and the tender for supplying the food items is on course. I further call upon people of goodwill to join this noble exercise. My administration is committed to put in place long term measures geared towards achieving food security such as construction of dams, boreholes and water pans to ensure that our farmers have adequate water for irrigation purposes,” he said.
By Wangari Mwangi