Kenya

Tana River District: Drought Monthly Bulletin, December 2006

Attachments

Situation Overview.

All parts of the district continued to report some rains. During the month, the rainfall figures from the existing stations recorded a minimum of 80mm.  The coastal areas however reported above normal rains during the month.

There is a remarkable improvement on the water situation as all the water sources have accumulated substantial amounts of water.

The vegetation quality is rated fair as pasture has regenerated while browse and large trees sprouted and turned green in all parts of the district. The pasture quantity is also rated adequate in all parts of the district.

Livestock body conditions and health are rated fair. Main diseases reported include isolated cases of foot & mouth, CCPP, CCBP, and Foot rot. LSD was however widely reported in most parts of the district. There is also very high alert of Rift Valley Fever reported in many parts of the district. Tetse and ticks infestation is expected to be a major drawback to the health of the animals' district wide.

Milk yield has generally improved but still lower than normally expected for this season.

Both cereal and livestock prices have gone up with livestock prices exorbitantly rising over the month.

Malaria remained the most common disease recording an upsurge of the cases reported. Other diseases of concern include widely reported cases of diarrhoea.  Rift Valley Fever was reported in parts of Bangale, Madogo and Bura where 6 people are feared to have succumbed to the disease.

The flood situation still continues to affect more people especially in the delta areas of Garsen and Kipini divisions.

The food security situation especially in the areas affected by the floods (marginal mixed farming and mixed farming zones) is still alarming, as the floods have washed away all the food crops in these areas. In the pastoral zone, though the environmental conditions have drastically improved and favourable, lower than expected milk yield is being experienced.

Though the clashes between the Orma and Wardei has calmed down, tension is still high among these communities.

Recommendations to DSG/KFSSG

There is need to come up with concrete plan of activities to curb spread of Rift valley Fever already reported in parts of the district in order to minimize incidences of deaths.

Food and Non-food assistance should continue to be considered to the flood victims' district wide.

Peace building and conflict management initiatives should be enhanced and continue to be carried out in the Orma and Wardei communities.

Consider relief seeds and farming implements to farming families who have been seriously affected by the recent floods.

Current interventions.

Non-Food Aid

Water tracking to flood victims

Provision of mobile toilets

Water treatment

Provision of tents and turpolines.

Mosquito control efforts through supply of mosquito nets.

Provision of households items (utensils) and water storage facilities to flood victims.

Vaccination campaign against CCPP, CBPP and LSD by the DVO

Clinical services to flood victims.

Food Aid.

Emergency food operations still going on in 6 divisions

Supplementary feeding.

Food for work activities.

Food aid to flood victims.

1. ENVIRONMENTAL INDICATORS (STABILITY)

1.1 Rainfall.

- All parts of the district continued to report some rains. During the month, rainfall figures from the existing stations recorded a minimum of 80mm.  The coastal areas however reported above normal rains.

1.2 Condition of natural vegetation and pasture.

The general condition of the vegetation is rated fairly good as pasture has regenerated while browse and large trees sprouted and turned green in all parts of the district. The pasture quantity is also rated adequate in all parts of the district.

The above situation was observed as a normal trend for such seasons of the year

Distances to grazing areas from the homesteads have drastically reduced, as pasture is readily available near the settlements.

1.3 Water Sources and Availability

There is a remarkable improvement on the water situation as all the water sources have accumulated substantial amounts of water while all the seasonal rivers are flowing with water.

This is an anticipated scenario at such seasons of the year however in the marginal farming and mixed farming zones excessive water in the farm fields resulting from the bursting of the river banks has brought about disastrous effects on the crops.

1.4 Emerging Issues.

1.4.1 Insecurity/conflict /human displacement

Human/wildlife conflict in terms of crop destruction has been minimized, however cases of livestock predation and human attacks continued to be reported.

The flood situation is still continuing and affecting more households in the delta. More than 100,000 people are displaced and settled in campsites in higher grounds while some are settled in schools, churches and mosque compounds. Most of the victims lost their crops, livestock; personal belongs and farm implements to the floods.

Though the clashes between the Orma and Wardei has calmed down, tension is still high as high migrations of both communities out of the rival dominated areas is still being observed. This kind of regrouping should be closely monitored, as it may be a sign of preparation for war.

1.4.2 Migration

No unusual cases of migrations reported however, more livestock from the delta are moving towards the northern and hinterland areas of the district. This may be due to increased incidences of tsetse and ticks while at the same time the delta has become too wet therefore unfavourable for livestock.

1.5 Implications on food security

Though the environmental conditions have remarkably improved and expected to register positive impact in terms of livestock body conditions, milk availability and crop conditions, therefore improve the food security, however, the food security is still alarming in most parts of the district.

In the marginal and Mixed farming zones, all the food crops were washed away by floods and most of the people displaced while on the other hand all traditional coping mechanisms highly eroded.

In the pastoral dominated zone, lower than expected milk yield is being experienced. This is attributed to low calving, kidding and lambing rates caused by successive dry periods experienced in the near past.

Reported outbreak of Lumpy Skin Disease and Rift Valley Fever within the district is also feared to have negative effects on the pastoralists' food security.