A section of political leaders from the North Rift region has called on President Uhuru Kenyatta to declare the drought a national disaster.

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They said many people risk perishing in 13 counties worst hit by the persistent dry spell which has resulted to crop failure and loss of loss.

Speaking during a funds drive of Rift Valley Women Consumer Cooperative (RIVAW) on Thursday the leaders among them senators: Margaret Kamar (Uasin Gishu), Samson Cherargei (Nandi) and Turbo MP Janet Sitienei faulted plans by the government to import maize.

“We are calling on President Uhuru Kenyatta to declare the drought a national disaster so that the affected individuals can be assisted,” said Senator Margaret Kamar.

Turbo MP Janet Sitienei noted that farmers from the North Rift region are still holding millions of bags of maize which should be exhausted before any plans for importation is implemented.

“North Rift farmers have the capacity to feed millions of Kenyans facing starvation and any move by cartels to import maize who have infiltrated the maize sector as leaders from the region we will not allow,” added Senator Samson Cherargei.

Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka while at the function asked the leadership of special task force addressing maize farmers' concerns to resolve the matter with speed.