Kenya has stepped up measures to mitigate the effects caused by El Nino rains, which have resulted in over 20 deaths and missing individuals, Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua said on Friday.
'The government has mobilised technical and financial resources to enhance the response to the floods," Gachagua told journalists in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya.
"We are working with development partners to distribute food and non-food items to tens of families affected in order to prevent escalation of the humanitarian situation," he added.
The increased rainfall is a consequence of El Nino conditions in the Pacific Ocean and a positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD). The Kenya Meteorological Department (KMD) confirmed that steps have been taken to address and prevent severe consequences.
Aircraft have also been deployed to evacuate affected families to safer locations.
In recent weeks, many parts of Kenya have experienced excessive rainfall, endangering lives and livelihoods, with the risk of rivers overflowing.
Gachagua said that weather projections indicate the possibility of prolonged rains into the first quarter of 2024, prompting the government to raise awareness among communities residing in low-lying and landslide-prone areas.
El Nino is a climate pattern that occurs every two to seven years, while the Indian Ocean Dipole is a climate pattern associated with sea surface temperatures in the Indian Ocean.