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How To Make Good Use Of The Meteorological Weather Forecast For The Short Rains

Keriako Tobiko, Cabinet Secretary for Environment

How To Make Good Use Of The Meteorological Weather Forecast For The Short Rains

Hello Nyakundi,

The current Met forecast for the short rains is good news for those living in rural areas. There will be adequate rains for the short-term crops from mid October to December.

There will also be free God-given rain water for the thirsty rural areas. Nothing is as pleasant as drawing colourless water harvested in all types of storage containers including huge pots.

That is as long as one has ways of harvesting God’s free water. Some lucky harvesters with storage capacity of up to 500,000 litres will have water to take them beyond the long rains next year, 2020.

The question is how many people are able to harvest this water? What does the gubernatorial leadership do to make sure the residents harvest this water for at least 3 months? Sometimes we wonder why we keep complaining we do not get water from a National Dam when we do not encourage residents to collect what God has provided.

I have just read about a worrying thing about the weather forecast. There will be landslides in Muranga county. This is a natural catastrophe but can we keep on waiting for it to happen year in year out?

What does the environmental minister in this county do about it?

He is under moral obligation to protect the people living in these areas. Of course, he cannot do that alone. I believe the county should ask for special funds from the National government to address this disaster before it happens. Waiting to ask people to move to higher ground is no solution.

The funds provided should resettle the residents in these landslide prone areas to other areas. Then the environmental ministry should do reafforestation in these areas to be the way they were 40 years ago. This in itself will boost rainfall in these areas.

This will also mean more water for the Ndakaini Dam. At the same time the people of Mathioya and Kangema and West Kiharu who may never have the coveted Ndakaini Dam water will have their Kahuti and Gatango Self-help water projects revived to serve these areas.

They want their water.

The Ndakaini supply can go to Kigumo, Maragua, Gatanga, Kandara and the semi arid areas of Muranga county.

And to boost the water towers and other water sources, the Ministry of Environment should declare the huge Blue Gum tree a TREE NONGRATA in Muranga county or any other county in the country.

The blue gum tree has led to drying up of natural springs and leading to low volumes of water in rivers like the Two Mathioyas in Muranga and the Sagana River running down Nyeri, Muranga and Kirinyaga counties!

All the natural wells, Visima, are gone within just 4 decades. Thanks to the water guzzler and soil desiccator, Blue Gum tree.

It should go like yesterday. Growing it for fast commercial gains is tantamount to the counties committing suicide.

Meanwhile we should think seriously about the semi arid areas in the counties.

Wananchi should be taught how to collect run off water in small household ponds which use polythene sheeting. The water so preserved should be used to irrigate small plots to grow subsistence crops like beans, cassava and sweet potato vines and the African dark green leafy vegetables.

So as we wait for the short rains let us wait for them as God’s blessings to help us grow subsistence crops. Not as catastrophes to bury us alive in those landslides.

Signed: Shosh.

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