Kenyans unite in calling out the Gv't after denial of drought crisis

Government denied any deaths!

Photo Courtesy of Roncliff Odit/BBC Swahili

A few days after reports highlighted how a section of Kenyans were facing drought crisis in Turkana, Baringo and other counties, netizens have expressed frustrations with how the Government has responded.

This is after concerned state officials together with Deputy President William Ruto came out to strongly deny that anyone had died from hunger.

It is important for Kenyans to know that we have sufficient food in the country. The food situation in country is stable and there should be no cause for alarm,” said DP Ruto in a press conference after a meeting with convened with cabinet secretaries on Monday.

The National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) CEO James Oduor in the press conference also downplayed reports that 11 people had died insisting that their deaths were not drought related and could have been caused by other issues, a response that baffled Kenyans at large leading some to question his ignorance.

Those deaths are linked to maybe sickness or other issues. As far as we are concerned we do not have any report that can directly link any of those deaths to drought,” said Oduor.

The DP went on to say that the government had set aside Sh2 Billion to take care of the situation by providing food to the affected families in 13 counties.

However, journalists who were on the ground, sent pictures that depicted a dreadful situation in Turkana County and the other affected areas.

Under the hashtag #WeCannotIgnore that has topped the trending list for the better part of Tuesday, Kenyans called out the government as being in denial when people were suffering in Turkana.

The photos depict hunger stricken locals in one of the towns in Turkana, with some stating that they had gone two to three days without food.

Others condemned elected leaders from the affected counties for doing nothing to ensure such cases don’t arise over the years, as they called on Government to step up efforts to ensure the situation is controlled.

Netizens questioned how we could be facing the same problem almost 8 years on yet Jubilee had promised that no Kenyan would die of hunger in 2013 campaigns before ascending to power.

Here are their reactions

@Ali_Manzu #WeCannotIgnore She is 6 months pregnant. Last time she ate is 3 days ago. #TurkanaDrought

@JamilaMohamed #WeCannotIgnore the situation being witnessed is Kenya is cyclical, we will witness the same sad state of affairs again and again: What happened to early warning systems? The Meteorological Department says it gave numerous warnings about the delay in the start of the rain season

@ClaretAdhiambo Denials, and blame games by the government will not bring back the people who have died of starvation in Turkana and will definitely not restore the health of these people #WeCannotIgnore

@dinabob Drought like pregnancy gives one time to prepare. It's not a quick onset disaster. Had the government invested in preparedness measures, we wouldn't be here talking about deaths and starvation. #WeCannotIgnore Kenyans have a right to life and a dignified life for that matter.

@ChangingLivesKE #WeCannotIgnore that before the rain season we have people dying of hunger, during the rain season we have people dying because of floods. The govt needs to really put plans and measures to curb this recurring issue. Prevention is better than cure!

@VidijaPatrick When a government lives in denial of the truth, its people take action. Madaraka day is in June, all plans ready. The floods are coming but alas.... money was looted. @WilliamsRuto #WeCannotIgnore

An estimated 1.1 million Kenyans are facing starvation in Samburu, Marsabit, Garissa, Isiolo, Mandera, Wajir, Baringo, Kilifi, Tana River, West Pokot, Makueni, Kajiado, and Kwale.

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