Sh1 billion to boost arid land farms
THE government will spend Sh1billion to streamline sustainable land management in agro-pastoral production systems in four districts. Livestock PS Kenneth Lusaka said that the programme will be implemented in Narok, Mbeere, Kyuso and Garrisa districts which are categorised as ASALs. Lusaka was speaking in a two-day workshop in Narok town.
The project will be funded by Global Environment Facility, United Nations Development Programme and the government for the next five years. He was accompanied by UNDP country director Alfredo Texeira and Livestock Production secretary Dr Julius Kiptarus. “The programme is geared to achieve sustainable land management in providing basis for economic development, food security and livelihoods while restoring the ecological integrity of the ASAL areas,” said Lusaka. In the larger Narok District, the programme will be implemented at Suswa, Ewaso Ngiro and Enelerai areas.
He added that the viability of the agro-pastoral production system will be increased through diversification and access to finances. “About 80 percent of the country’s lands mass are characterized by hot and dry climate with low and unreliable rainfall. Eleven out of 72 districts are classified as arid, 19 as semi-arid while six have high annual rainfall but with arid and semi-arid conditions,” he said.
“The ASAL regions are among the nation’s poorest where weak infrastructure, insecurity and drought are rampant and the locals are living in conditions of poverty and vulnerability,” Lusaka added.