By Guest Commentator – Abel Mutuku
More than 20,000 people and close to 120,000 head of cattle in Kitui East risk starvation following a severe drought that has caused water shortage in the region.
Seven villages in Endau and Malalani locations are hardest hit and the residents have been left to rely on only three wells as a humanitarian crisis looms across the county.
The three wells are nothing but death traps, as they have been dug on the sandy banks of river Enziu and go up to fifty metres down.
The residents here feel they have been neglected by the government and are now appealing to NGOs to come to their rescue.
On average people here have to walk for more than 20 kilometres in search of water.
Nduku kangaatu,80, told members of the press who had toured the area in company of youth leaders who come from the area that had spent her night in the queue.
“I came here yesterday in the evening and as we speak I’m yet to get water” said Nduku.
“Soon you will hear deaths of people and animals if urgent help will not come to us, “added Nduku.
Henry Muasya a teacher in the area said that pupils are dropping out of school due to the water shortage that has hit the area.
Business oriented people have taken this misfortune to their advantage and established food kiosks in the river to sell meals to people spending night fetching water.