First lady Margaret Kenyatta has challenged residents of Makueni County to harness water during rainy seasons in an effort to enhance food production.
The first lady said unpredictable weather patterns occasioned by desertification was impacting negatively on food production and underscored the need for the county to cushion itself from perennial famines through proper utilization of water resources.
Speaking when she launched the 3oth Beyond Zero Campaign mobile clinic in Wote town Ms. Kenyatta noted that the county government should leverage the available water resources in the county for sustainable agriculture.
“The county needs to utilize the little water resources to secure the future of agricultural production and make Makueni water independent,” said the first lady.
Concerning health, the first lady extolled the achievements made by the county government in an effort to provide quality health care especially maternal services.
She said that the increasing number of women giving birth at health facilities in Makueni was a step in the right direction in the fight against maternal and child deaths adding that the mobile clinic would help boost the county government efforts to ensure that women get access to maternal care.
“The Beyond Zero Campaign aims at ensuring that no woman dies while giving life and enable the children to celebrate many birthdays besides eliminating HIV mother to child transmission,” Ms. Kenyatta said.
Governor Kivutha Kibwana said that his government was committed to providing accessible and quality health care but noted that illiteracy, poverty and weak health care structures were main challenges.
He said that the government has so far invested Sh400, ooo this year for equipping all health facilities with drugs and disclosed the government will set up theatre units in major health facilities across the county.
Senator Mutula Kilonzo Junior called on the national government to allocate more resources for the health function for quality health care.
The senator also prevailed on the national government to upgrade Makueni County Referral Hospital from a level four to a level five hospital.
According to the Makueni Health Executive Dr. Andrew Mulwa the rate of women giving birth in hospitals in the county has increased from 19 percent to 53 percent since inception of devolution and the mobile clinic could not come at a better time as it will help to increase this further.