Kilifi, KENYA: More than 600 families in drought and hunger prone regions in Ganze sub-county in Kilifi County, have received relief food and clean water from African Muslim Agency and Direct Aid-Kenya organizations.
The organizations distributed assorted foodstuffs including maize and wheat flour, rice and cooking oil with a 10,000 cubic litres water boozer that was supplying free water to the locals.
Speaking after receiving relief food from the Kuwait based organization, Direct Aid-Kenya and its affiliate African Muslim Agency (AMA) on Wednesday, residents of Mtsangamali trading Centre said it is high time the national government allowed more NGOs to take over the distribution of relief food to affected families.
Samson Kahaso, a resident of Mtsangamali village said they are suffering from hunger following a two year massive crop failure due to prolonged drought.
“Food and water is the main problem in our village and the entire Ganze Sub-county,” Kahaso said.
“Usually we depend on charcoal burning but there are no more trees. The place is quickly turning into a desert,” he added.
Kahaso said the relief food they usually get from both the national and county government is very little considering the swelling number of needy people facing the risk of starvation.
“Sometimes when the government brings food to this area, one usually gets only one kilo of maize and beans. That for a person with a big family remains very little. We want more NGOs to hear our plight and bring more food to this area,” he said.
Rebbeca Kazungu, a mother of six children appreciated the organization’s will to assist her with food and water that would at least push her for two weeks, since most of her children are away from home.
“It has been very tough in the village here as mostly we eat once a day in the evening,” Rebecca said.
“We have not harvested anything for the last two years because of drought. This food will take me at least two weeks, “she said.
At Dungicha trading Centre, Karisa Charo was also a joyful man after getting maize flour, wheat flour and rice.
“The situation is bad here, we have suffered for long, going to bed hungry. Things are worse in this region,” Charo said.
Direct Aid-Kenya and AMA country director Dr Ismael Hussein said the relief food was donated to the villagers by the Kuwait government.
“We are here today in one of our programs to distribute relief food and water specifically to regions that have been badly hit by hunger because of prolonged drought,” Dr. Hussein said.
He said the organization further undertakes other initiatives like drilling boreholes, education sponsorship to needy and bright students, apart from assisting orphans and also engaging in hospitality.
The county has an estimated 1.3 million people as per the 2009 census and has of late been battling hunger occasioned by prolonged drought.
Dr Ismael, said the organization has been distributing relief food in drought prone areas of Mandera, Isiolo, Garissa, Marsabit, Moyale,Wajir, Tanariver, Lamu among others.