Kenya's Weather Forecast Takes a Twist: El Nino or Just Rainy Days Ahead?

Kenya's weather forecast has taken an unexpected twist. Initially, scientists predicted El Nino, but President William Ruto has debunked these forecasts. He now asserts that the October-November-December season will bring short rains, sparing farmers from devastating impacts. While the Kenya Meteorological Department (KMD) hasn't yet made an official announcement, the President's statements have created a buzz.


Mohamed Sabir Aamir Malik

10/23/20232 min read

President Ruto's statement sparked a flurry of reactions, both online and offline. Kenyans, ever quick-witted, had previously poked fun at the looming El Nino forecasts. In early September, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) hinted at the possibility of an impending El Nino, sending waves of concern across the nation. KMD later bolstered the warning, advising Kenyans to brace themselves for El Nino during the short rain season.

Even on the global stage, meteorological heavyweights like the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) seemed to sing the same tune, with NOAA even extending its forecast into February 2024.

But in the midst of this weather rollercoaster, farmers in various regions began receiving intriguing messages from a farmer information service known as iShamba. These messages offered tantalizing predictions, such as 27 millimeters of rain on October 1, a whopping 66 millimeters on October 11, and a rather damp 58 millimeters predicted for October 26.

As the country collectively holds its breath, waiting for an official statement from the KMD, experts want to keep our hopes grounded. They say that El Nino isn't entirely vanquished; its presence just wears a shroud of uncertainty. Rain distribution across the country can be a fickle thing. In Nairobi, the rain may make a brief appearance, yet it contributes to above-average rainfall. Conversely, in places like Garissa, rain might decide to throw an extended party.

So, as we journey through this October-November-December season, remember this: the forecast isn't written in stone. November holds the secret to the short rains' peak. And, even if Nairobi enjoys its fair share of sunshine, it's no foolproof El Nino repellent. Weather patterns can be as tricky as a puzzle, and they don't always follow the rules. The initial predictions may still hold some sway, even if they don't guarantee torrential rain every single day and all across the country.


As the country navigates these shifting weather sands, one thing's for sure: we're all in for a surprise. So keep that umbrella handy, stay vigilant, and get ready to dance with the rain when it decides to grace us with its presence.