As the effects of drought continue to devastate households in Kajiado County, Tata Chemicals Magadi has stepped in to provide relief food and water to members of four group ranches namely Oldonyonyokie, Shompole, Olkiramatian, and Olkeri to mitigate their suffering.
Additionally, the company’s hospital has waived medical fees for pregnant women, lactating mothers, and children below five years.
Meanwhile, the company continues to supply water to the community using its water bowsers, especially to those living close to the railway line in the township.
The ongoing drought in Kajiado County has wiped out pasture, affecting both livestock and wildlife, with hundreds of cattle, sheep, goats, buffaloes, zebras and elephants succumbing to starvation.
In recent weeks, the local pastoral community has been forced to make the difficult choice of either selling their deteriorating livestock for a song to slaughterhouse owners or losing them.
‘‘By providing water for us, our livestock have been saved,’’ said Mr Ole Saiyanka during the flagging off of the relief food in Magadi.
‘‘With the relief food, our children can continue to go to school,’’ he added.
Tata Chemicals is one of Kenya’s leading manufacturers and exporters of natural soda ash.
Company managing director Subodh Srivastav has pledged to continue supporting the community through this period, with a particular focus on women, whom he says have been most hit by the calamity.
Prolonged dry weather conditions have hurt agricultural production, the country’s mainstay economic activity, Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) has said.
Farming activities — which account for more than a fifth of Kenya’s GDP— slid 2.1 percent, a deeper contraction than 0.5 percent in a similar quarter the year before.