3.1M Kenyans facing acute hunger as drought bites

East African nation prepares relief program as malnutrition, food insecurity, drought persist, says interior minister.

3.1M Kenyans facing acute hunger as drought bites

At least 3.1 million Kenyans are in need of urgent food relief as malnutrition, food insecurity and drought have rocked the East African nation, Kenya's interior minister said on Monday.

Speaking to journalists, Fred Matiangi said 3.1 million Kenyans are severely food insecure, especially in the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL) regions of Kenya.

The official added that a hybrid program of cash transfer and food distribution has been adopted to provide relief to those in need.

Matiangi warned that the number might increase to 3.5 million if the weather situation does not improve, adding most of the regions in Kenya have recorded failed rains with ASAL regions being the worst impacted.

According to government records, the number of people facing hunger due to drought was 2.5 million in January.