Kenya

Garissa District: Drought Monthly Bulletin, April 2007

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Situation Overview

- Rainfall started but not evenly distributed. The April long rains have started late and are not raining continuously. It has rained in parts of some division while other divisions have not received any rain.

- There is plenty of forage in all the divisions. However it is getting depleted when compared with the preceding month. The occurrence of wild fire has reduced in most parts of the district.

- Most of the pastoral communities were forced to move from large water pans in the center of the district which have dried up. Some of the water pans which dried up include Abdisemet, Khabobey, and Faf Kalala.

- Livestock moved to river Tana and to other major water sources in the district like boreholes, Benane springs and shallow wells of Galana Gof of Modogashe. Most of the boreholes are operational but not congested.

- Household accessibility to water has slightly reduced when compared with the preceding month and this is as a result most of the large water pans having dried up and the remaining becoming congested. The areas near the water pans is becoming depleted leading to an increase in the distance covered to fetch water.

- The distance for watering livestock has slightly increased because most of the large and small water pans have dried.

- There are no cases reported for conflict, insecurity and human displacement in the entire district but the security situation at the Kenya-Somali border still remained tense.

- There are no major out migration or in migration noted during the month under view. However there was slight movement of livestock from one water source to another. This is due to large water pans in the interior grazing areas drying up. Due to abundance of pasture/browse, all species of livestock body condition continued to improve fetching increased prices. Lifting of the ban on livestock sales and their products and the improvement of livestock health and body conditions reflects a positive food security implication.

- Crops diseases have not been reported from the entire district but the menace of crickets to crops remained alarming.

- Following the destructive flood of the short rains few seasonal farmers in pastoral areas have harvested few bags of maize and sorghum (Benane).

- Cattle prices continue to improve when compared with preceding month. This is due to the opening up of livestock market following the lifting of the ban. The demand for goats in big towns like Mombassa and Nairobi has increased. Sheep prices continue to improve when compared with the preceding month. Generally Livestock health and body conditions have improved during the last two months.

- The prices of maize continued to reduce when compared with the previous month. This is due to easily available cereals in rural areas. Food commodities like cooking oil and beans prices did not show any much change in prices. However sugar price has slightly reduced when compared with the preceding month.

- Opening up of municipality slaughter house, Garissa main livestock market, increased livestock prices and rehabilitation of irrigation farms indicate a positive food security implication.

- Both adults and children health continue to improve in pastoral communities. However, there are cases of measles and cholera being reported in one of the Dadaab refugee camps (IFO) and this is a threat to locals from the surrounding centers that come to sale their milk and buy their households needs from these camps.

- Children below the age of five (5) and above one (1) year nutritional status continue to improve in pastoral communities when compared with the previous month. This is due to improved health and increase in milk consumption at household level. The centers which are likely to be affected are those centers which are very close to refugee camps like Lebisigale, Alinjugur, Yumbis, Mathah gesi and Hagardere borehole five (5). CURRENT

INTERVENTION MEASURES

(NON FOOD)

- CARE continued to rehabilitate and service borehole facilities and engines.

Restocking by Oxfam through Garissa Peace Committee was carried out.

FOOD AID

- The EMOP for relief food distribution ended in March and for now reduced number of beneficiaries was anticipated to continue with effect from mid April.

- The initial figure for relief food beneficiaries in the district was 119,947 and now reduced to 91,408 beneficiaries. This was due to the last assessment done in February by KFSSG which revealed improved human and livestock conditions with increased livestock productivity.

RECOMMENDATIONS.

- The relief food should be distributed to all centers before the roads become impassable.

- More attention and assistance should be given to farms along river Tana that have been devastated by short rains flood.

- Continue to restock needy families (households) that have lost their livelihood.

- Restock with drugs and equip rural dispensaries which are not utilized.

- Continue to create awareness in pastoral communities in curbing down the burning of vegetation.

- Surveillance on livestock diseases should continue.