Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has announced that the government will launch a paybill number for Kenyans to contribute towards the alleviation of the effect of droughts in affected areas.

Gachagua revealed that the government has already raised about Sh57.8 billion for the same cause which is intended for drought-stricken areas across Kenya.

The funds which were raised in collaboration with various development partners, including the United Nations, will be used to feed over 4.3 million Kenyans in 23 counties found within the Arid and Semi-Arid areas.

The DP said the funds were part of the government’s endeavours to resolve the drought situation affecting Kenya currently.

Gachagua was speaking at the inauguration of the 15-member National Steering Committee on Drought Response President William Ruto formed earlier in the week.

He also said the government has set various initiatives rolling one of them being the Flash Appeal which aims at raising USD472.6 million and will supplement the government’s efforts to feed its citizens in need.

“We already have several initiatives set in motion. On Monday, I joined the UN Family in Maalimin, Garissa County, for the launch of a Flash Appeal for USD472.6 million to support 4.3 million drought-affected Kenyans in 23 ASALs counties out of an estimated 6.4 million people projected to require humanitarian assistance across the country,” Gachagua said.

“This initiative will assist to bridge the government resource gap as the drought crisis worsens."

Gachagua’s announcement comes against the backdrop of an impending drought that has been caused by low rainfall in recent seasons.