The Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi has assured the European Union Member States that every shilling from the European Union grant kitty will be prudently managed as support in the fight against drought in the country.

Mudavadi says the government through relevant players including the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) will ensure the financial support is channeled to the sole purpose to ensure the vulnerable communities cope with impacts of drought and climate change.

“As government we will ensure the Ksh 1.7 billion (13 Million Euros) grant by the European Union through the Dryland Climate Action for Community Drought Resilience (DCADR) project are well utilized. This will significantly enhance resilience of our communities to drought and other effects of climate change.” said Mudavadi.

“As government, we will honour our commitment under the grant contract to contribute a further about Ksh 650 million (5 Million Euros) as counterpart-funding to the project.” added Mudavadi.

The Prime Cabinet Secretary who officially launched the project under the Ministry for East African Community, Arid and Semi-Arid Lands and Regional Development emphasized on the need for development partners to continue supporting Kenya’s drought-risk management efforts since much has been undertaken by the Kenyan government but there still lies need for external support.

“Drought can be very dehumanizing and it breeds poverty and there is no dignity in dignity in poverty. We need to pull all resources available at our disposal in fight against drought for us to bring dignity to the lives of our Kenyans hard hit by drought and famine in Arid and Semi-Arid regions (ASAL) and other parts of the country.” said Mudavadi as he lauded the European Unions’ support base towards our drought-risk management efforts in Kenya between 2007 and 2022 to a tune of approximately 65 million Euros translating to about Ksh 7.8 Billion.

“The continued and consistent support through the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) by the EU for the last 15 years is clear testimony of the confidence you have in the work that the Authority does and the overall trust you have in the Kenyan government’s efforts in the fight against drought and its net effects.” said Mudavadi.

The Prime Cabinet Secretary further outlined the measures being put in place by the government as drought preparedness and response interventions that will positively impact on the food security of the most vulnerable populations in ASAL areas.

Stating that impacts and effects of the current prolonged drought would have been much worse were it not for the actions being taken through the support by European Union and other international and local partners.

“As the European Union, what we are looking at are future innovative programs that will ensure we develop permanent, sustainable approaches to save the livelihoods in the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands which are the most vulnerable when it comes to the severe effects of drought.” The European Union Ambassador to Kenya Henritte Geiger said in her remarks.

“The challenges caused by drought have awakened us into the bitter reality. We have to develop mechanisms that will be sustainable and enable us mitigate the challenges brought about by the effects of drought so that we do not find ourselves in such situations unawares.” said Rebecca Miano, Cabinet Secretary for Ministry for East African Community, Arid and Semi-Arid Lands and Regional Development during the launch.

“Humanitarian assistance is only a stop-gap measure. Our manifesto recognises that an estimated 2 million households, that is one in six, are food-poor. The vast majority of these are farmers, some of these farmers are in our arid and semi-arid regions. We believe that support to farmers to raise productivity would not only enable them to feed themselves, but also generate a surplus that contributes to national food security and the economy.” Said Mudavadi.

The Prime Cabinet Secretary pointed out that Kenya is taking proactive action to put in place long-term measures that will address the challenges posed by cyclic droughts.  For instance, the government is committed to build 1,000 dams across the country through public-private partnerships to increase food production.

In addition, Kenya is joining other global players in the global fight against the planetary crises of climate change, pollution, and loss of nature and biodiversity, which are threatening the well-being and survival of mankind.

As a contribution towards reducing greenhouse emissions, stopping and reversing deforestation and, restoring 5.1 million hectares of deforested and degraded landscapes, Kenya’s government has an ambitious plan to plant 15 billion trees in the next 10 years.