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Kenya Red Cross says 2.1 mn Kenyans face acute food insecurity

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By NS Desk 18-Aug-2021

Nairobi, Aug 18 (IANS) Kenya Red Cross Society said Tuesday that 2.1 million Kenyans are currently facing high acute food insecurity, up from 1.4 million in February due to a worsening drought situation.

Asha Mohammed, secretary-general of Kenya Red Cross Society, said that the affected people are in 12 semi-arid and arid counties of the country, the Xinhua news agency reported.

"The worsening food and nutrition situation is mainly attributed to the poor performance of the October-November-December 2020 and March-April-May rains," Mohammed said, adding that unless urgent multi-sectoral interventions are implemented, the food insecurity situation will get out of hand and affect a total of 20 counties.

According to the organisation, the drought-affected counties have had no significant harvest, as most water points such as boreholes, wells and water pans have dried up, increasing distances that people travel looking for water for domestic and livestock use.

Mohammed observed that the general lack of water and grazing pasture is fuelling migration and resource-based conflicts while rates of malnutrition in the northeastern part of the country are on the increase.

Projections based on weather forecasts indicate that the ongoing drought will persist until early 2022 since climate forecasts for the upcoming short rains beginning in October indicate below-average rains in the water-stressed areas.

--IANS

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