The government has asked residents of Nyandarua County to clear leaning and overgrown trees near their homesteads and in school compounds to avert the dangers of El Nino rains and heavy winds.
Stakeholders have also been asked to harmonise their efforts so as to minimise the adverse effects of the upcoming El Nino rains in the area.
Speaking during a strategic and consultation meeting on El Nino preparedness in Ol Kalou town, the team drawn from the national and county governments urged residents to be aware of the looming danger posed by overgrown trees.
The County Forests Conservator, John Njoroge, however, said residents should take advantage of the heavy rains to plant more trees.
“On a positive note, the El Nino phenomenon gives an opportunity to grow trees. We have an obligation to plant 15 billion trees within the next ten years, and right now Nyandarua is at 27.56 per cent in tree cover, and every county has a target.
“As a county, we are expected to have moved our tree cover up to 36.69 per cent, and it can only be achieved through the expected rains,” said Njoroge.
On his part, Peter Wambugu, the meteorology director in the county, said that the rains are expected to be felt in the first or second week of October.
He urged the residents to be vigilant and ensure that they avoid low areas during the rainy seasons.
“I have given the seasonal weather forecast, and we are anticipating the El Nino rains, and we expect the rain to be above average and can be used for agricultural purposes. We are expecting the rains to go up to late January 2024,” said Wambugu.
On budget preparedness, the team led by County Secretary Kanja Muchina said that they are heavily relying on the county emergency kitty but said that they are expecting more appropriations from the county and national government to mitigate the effects expected to arise from El Nino rains.
The team noted that proper planning and a coordinated response will also improve the post-disaster recovery process.
At the same time, it also proposed standby evacuation alternatives to national exam delivery during the El Nino period.
The meeting follows a warning by the Kenya Meteorological Department about Nyandarua being affected by the heavy rains expected from October 2023 to January 2024.
The team later formed critical groups that shall be used for the day-to-day reports and updates with regard to the El Nino rains.
Source: Kenya News