Senators want State to come up with food security plan
Senators want the government to develop targeted policy programmes aimed at addressing food insecurity.
The senators said the prevailing food shortage has been a result of a lack of adequate rainfall over the last two years, a consistent decline in the number of farmers and the Russia-Ukraine war that has led to an increased cost of fertilizer and fuel products.
In a motion, Tharaka Nithi Senator Mwenda Gataya said the increased cost of fertiliser and fuel products are critical farm inputs, adding that the high costs have subjected 4.1 million Kenyans in the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASALs) to an acute food insecure situation.
“We have about 942,500 children under five years and 134,270 pregnant and lactating mothers to acute malnutrition according to the Kenya Food Security Steering Group (KFSSG) report,” said Gataya.
He argued that Semi-Arid Lands (ASALs) and the situation is expected to be dire in light of expert projections that we may miss the normal cycle of rain expected in October, November, and December 2022 and that this could be the worst drought we have experienced in 40 years.
“The country is recording incidences of conflict between crop farmers and pastoralists over the scarce resource of water and pasture which results in the destruction of crops and deaths of livestock. The situation has further exacerbated the food crisis and the challenge of food shortage is now spreading to areas previously presumed to be rain-rich such as Mt. Kenya whose residents are now relying on government emergency food supplies,” said Gataya.