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New plan for drought victims pays out

A livestock carcass in Marsabit ,Northern Kenya, which has suffered prolonged drought. Credit: Neil Palmer (CIAT)

MARSABIT, Kenya — “We have never experienced a season like this one,” said Boru Sora, a 25-year old herder of the Borana tribe in northern Kenya.

“Sixty of our cattle died this year out of 120, 17 more were taken by raiders, but the main reason? It is hunger and weakness that kills them. It is the drought.”

At the center of Sora’s family compound, demarcated by thorn bushes, is a circular mud-walled hut; outside the plot, crumpled over rocks, are the desiccated carcasses of some of the family’s depleted herd, left to rot where they fell.

“It is a disaster for us,” said Sora’s 56-year old father Haro, a forlorn man who lost his right eye to disease years ago. “We have no hope.”

Pastoralists in the Horn of Africa have been hardest-hit by the drought that is ravaging the region. More than 12 million people are short of food and in the parts of Somalia where drought has worsened into famine, 750,000 people face starvation, according to United Nations figures.

Read more…… By Tristan McConnell, Global post (Nov 2011)

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