Nairobi — President William Ruto has committed to rally the global community to mobilize resources for climate adaptation amid an unprecedented famine in the Horn of Africa region and Kenya’s northeastern.
Ruto noted his administration has had to reorganize the budget so that resources for food relief can be deployed in the drought-struck northeast.
Speaking during an interview on Al Jazeera in New York, President Ruto said an estimated 3.1 million Kenyans are in dire need of food aid.
“They have not harvested the last four years. They have had failed rains for the last four seasons. 70% percent of their livestock, they have lost and therefore it is a real serious situation,” he said.
The Head of State blamed climate change for the drought situation, adding that it is the reason Kenya is championing climate change.
“That is why Kenya is providing leadership on matters to do with climate change because we are living it every day. We can see it on our faces every day, the effects of climate change,” Ruto said.
He further called on multilateral institutions and lenders for support.
“And that is why Kenya will be looking at COP27 to provide the framework where financing for climate adaptation, climate mitigation, 13 years ago, pledges were made for 100 billion dollars every year, nothing has been forthcoming.”
“I was asking the multilateral financial institutions to re – think because many countries are re – organizing their budgets to provide for climate change effects rather than their development,” he added.
Ruto further insisted on the need for the international communities to engage countries in the African continent with a view of finding a sustainable solution.
“And that is why those of us from the global south, specifically from Africa, want a real candid conversation on climate change and how we can deal with the people that are affected, how we can deal with the situations that are emerging and the reality that we have to deal with every day of people who are in dire need,” he said.
Ruto’s comment came days after the National Drought Management Authority (NDMA) released a report listing three counties of Laikipia, Tana River and Tharaka Nithi among devolved units sliding into the alarm phase, bringing the total number of counties in alarm phase to ten.