, NAIROBI, Kenya Apr 9 – First Lady Margaret Kenyatta has given gave a personal commitment to continue with efforts to alleviate the suffering of 3 million Kenyans facing starvation sparked off by the prolonged drought.
She urged other Kenyans of goodwill to stand together and continue galvanizing support in solidarity with the victims of drought, hunger and starvation.
She said it was heartbreaking to see children, women and men undergo so much suffering occasioned by one of the longest and worst drought in decades.
“I have witnessed it first hand during my visit to Marsabit in February. This drought is without a doubt one of the worst we have experienced in decades,” said the First Lady.
She spoke at a Nairobi Hotel during a drought fundraising dinner organized by the Muslim Women’s Network chaired by Ms Amina Hirsi.
“So as we stand together in the honour of our shared humanity, I want to assure everyone here of my personal commitment, and that of my office, towards supporting efforts to alleviate the suffering of children, women and men. Because their pain is our pain,” said the First Lady.
The First Lady urged Kenyans to stand together and pledge not to forsake other compatriots who need help.
She said the widespread drought that has affected 23 Counties, 13 of them severely, has not only occasioned untold suffering to the affected communities, but it has made a serious threat to their livelihoods and their future.
The First Lady said the affected Kenyans will continue to be in urgent need of assistance over the next six months- with a large percentage being women and children.
She said by coming together, Kenyans can overcome any form of adversity and overcome unimaginable trials and suffering.
Over the last few months, the First Lady said she had witnessed the spectacular response of Kenyans and institutions like the Kenya Red Cross Society come together to address the crisis.
She applauded the Muslim Women’s Network for organizing last evening’s resource mobilization dinner in their efforts to empathize and show compassion to those affected by the drought.
She expressed optimism many more Kenyans and organizations will draw on their resources to respond to the call for help.
Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs Ambassador Amina Mohammed who brought over Sh4.3 million (from herself and friends) to the fundraiser described Kenya as a resilient nation that has overcome many daunting challenges in the past.
She was hopeful Kenyans will continue mobilizing more resources until the current drought-related crisis is resolved.
The fundraiser realized over over Sh17 million including Sh1 million each from Mama Ngina Kenyatta, Kenya Commercial Bank and Parastatals under the Ministry of Tourism.
Former President Daniel arap Moi and Deputy President William Ruto gave Sh500,000 each while while Baringo Senator Gedion Moi and the Leader of Majority in Parliament Aden Duale brought Sh400,000 and Sh200,000 respectively.
Other corporate and entities represented at the fundraiser included the First Community Bank, Gulf Bank, the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and industry and the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims among others.