The government has warned millers not to take advantage of the ongoing drought situation by increasing the price of maize flour. In a Cabinet meeting chaired by President Uhuru Kenyatta on Thursday at State House, the Cabinet affirmed that stern action will be taken against those who will hoard maize and other food commodities. This comes even as at least 13 Counties are tackling drought that has strained financial coffers and affected lives. Moreover, the delayed onset of the rain season has also caused panic and desperation among farmers, with the weatherman revealing the rains might delay past this month.
During the meeting, the Cabinet affirmed that necessary measures will be taken to ensure basic food commodity prices remain stable and pastoralist communities have also been urged to start destocking while animals are still healthy, and that the government will help in restocking when the weather improves. With the drought situation persisting, the Interior CS Dr. Fred Matiang’i will chair a committee that will ensure the response to the drought is well coordinated. The committee will oversee the setting up of mitigation measures for the rest of the year.
The delayed rains season will definitely have its effects, and Agriculture CS Mwangi Kunjuri had already warned that some will have to plant again and they will need assistance due to that, coupled with the early cessation forecast. He said valuable time will be lost due to the delayed rain season if the forecast turns out to be accurate, “Having been warned there will be an early cessation, the distribution will be poor..the rains will be depressed and they won’t be long,” he said in a press address days ago.