UN envoy to visit country, raise awareness on drought impacts

The National,Thursday June 30th, 2016

The United Nations secretary-general’s special envoy for El Nino and Climate ambassador Macharia Kamau will arrive in the country today on a three-day visit.
According to a statement, Kamau chose PNG as the first country to visit after 40 per cent of the people were affected by the recent drought and frost period.
He will meet with the Deputy Prime Minister Sir Leo Dion as well as other ministers and senior government officials during his visit.
Kamau will also meet representatives of the diplomatic missions, heads of UN agencies and other stakeholders.
He will visit Munuwata Island and Kuyawa Island in Milne Bay where people are suffering from severe food shortages triggered by the drought.
Since April last year, much of the country was severely impacted by the drought which affected food security.
Replanting crops during the peak of the prolonged drought was difficult.
Following the rains towards the end of last year and early this year, communities replanted, but in the Highlands and other areas, the sudden rains on dry ground created pest infestations and too much nitrogen in the soil, resulting in crop failure.
Kamau aims to mobilise political will and action at the international level to address the immediate and long-term needs of the communities affected.
He also aims to strengthen resilience of those communities.
Kamau has served as Kenya’s permanent representative to the UN in New York since 2010.
He is an international relations practitioner with broad work experience in international development policy, environment and sustainable development, strategic planning and communication.
Kamau served for over 24 years in senior positions within the UN including senior country leadership and management roles in the United Nations Development Programme and Unicef in countries in Africa, the Caribbean and New York.