The meteorological department in Kenya on 13th February 2017 announced that the expected rainfall in the months of March and April will genearally be low as compared to other similar periods in previous years. This period in Kenya is usually the long rains season and farmers time their planting season with it. It is therefore clear that farmers who depend on rain fed agriculture have to plan accordingly in preparation for this.
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According to the weatherman’s press release,only some few parts of Western Kenya is likely to be near-normal rainfall. Most of the eastern sector of the country is likely to remain generally dry during the month of March. While the seasonal rainfall is expected to pick up in April and May in this sector, the two months are expected to receive depressed rainfall.
The report further indicates the following in details:
- Western Counties (Busia, Vihiga, Kakamega, Bungoma and Mt. Elgon.); Nyanza Counties (Kisumu, Siaya, Migori, Kisii, Nyamira, Homa Bay, etc); and Some counties in central and Northern Rift Valley (Trans Nzoia, Uasin Gishu, Kericho, Baringo, Bomet, Nandi, Elgeyo Marakwet, Turkana, West Pokot, etc) are likely to receive near-normal (average) rainfall.
- Counties in the central and Southern Rift Valley (Samburu, Laikipia, Nakuru, Narok, Kajiado, etc); Central Counties (Nyandarua, Nyeri, Kiambu, Murang’a, Kirinyaga, etc.); Counties in Eastern Region (Embu, Tharaka, Meru etc.); Nairobi County (Westlands, Embakasi, Kasarani, Dagoretti, etc); Northeastern Region (Mandera, Garissa, Wajir, etc) and Counties in Coastal Region (Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi, Lamu, Tana River, Taita/Taveta); are likely to receive near normal rainfall with a tendency to below normal (i.e. generally depressed rainfall).
This forecast comes timely as instances of droughts are currently being experienced in Kenya and the early forecasting systems are ideally meant to assist the public and the government to prepare for the near future. The drought being experienced is also a learning tool of the consequence that the country shall face if the rainy season fails and we also fail to adopt accordingly. This weather forecasts are however meant to be used hand in hand with daily weather forecasts.