Kenya

Marsabit District: Drought Monthly Bulletin, May 2007

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Situation Overview

- During the month under review, amounts of rainfall received declined compared to previous month and similar period in normal year. However, below normal rain amounts were recorded in all hilly parts of the district which include Mt Marsabit, Mathew ranges, Hurri hills and its environs while lowland parts recorded inadequate amounts.

- Livestock marketing has negatively decreased in terms of prices compared to previous month.

- Cereal prices (Maize) has currently increased from Kshs.12.00 on April to Kshs. 15.00. This is attributed by poor crop harvest from past season and poor rains for the current long rains season with anticipated crop failure.

- Pastoralist term of trade was unfavorable in terms of livestock price rates compared to previous month. However, Livestock sales rates have fairly increased by 11% compared to previous month.

- Relatively there is apparent improved Food stability in Central, Gadhamoji divisions and parts of Maikona division due to impact of harvest from short rains season crops and camels giving birth in the respective divisions. However in North Horr,Loiyangalani and Laisamis divisions and parts of Maikona divisions situation of food security not good.

- Availability of water for both domestic and livestock use slightly improved with in most lowland parts, while hilly parts of Marsabit and Hurri Hills reported water shortages as result of depleted dams. Overall water related stress reduced by the rains, but not sustainable if trend of poor rains persists.

- During the month, monthly relief distribution from EMOP/WFP continued to all parts of the district apart from Central and Gadhamoji divisions which was excluded from the EMOP. However the numbers of beneficiaries were reduced even for the target areas.

- At Risk Malnutrition (ARM) status of children below five years currently shows an improving trend from 21% in the previous month to 16.4%. High ARM are recorded at Loiyangalani division registering 27%, followed by North Horr division with 20.5% and Maikona division remained with the least of 10.9%. Existing at risk malnutrition is attributed by food scarcity in the areas. Generally malnutrition rates are expected to increase further with decreasing relief foods (supplementary feedings) from EMOP, GOK, other relief agencies and unavailability of milk in permanent settlements/sample sites.