HARD TIMES A HEAD FOR ARID AND SEMI ARID LANDS AREAS AS THE WEATHERMAN FORECASTS REDUCED RAINFALL
The Kenya Meteorological Department in its press release on the weather outlook for the “Long Rains” painted a gloomy picture for the country. In its rainfall outlook for the 2011 “long rains” that is March to May season, the weather department predicts that much of the country is expected to record a below normal rainfall during this period.
The weather man has singled out Counties in much of the Eastern (Makueni, Machakos, Kitui, Marsabit, and Moyale); Counties in the western and northern parts of the Coast (Taita Taveta and Tana River, Kilifi, Lamu); and Counties in parts of the Rift Valley (Samburu, Isiolo, West Pokot, Baringo, Laikipia, and Turkana) as the areas that will be badly affected with near normal rainfall.
Speaking to the press director KMD Joseph Mukabana, said rainfall distribution within the 2011 long rains season is expected to be generally poor over most part of the country, with long dry spells likely to occur. Only April the peak month for precipitation during the season that supports the country’s yields is forecast to have normal rains.
Should the forecast of reduced rains come to pass then the country is bound to face more challenges with the population feeling the heat of high food prices as well as higher electricity bills.
The Arid and Semi-arid Lands (ASAL) according to the forecast will be worst hit. With the effects of the drought still being felt the pastoral communities are likely to lose more of their livestock to drought. They will be looking to the government’s initiative to purchase their livestock to save them from massive losses that they might incur if their livestock were left to die.