- Chiefs in all the 1159 locations in the rift valley are expected to plant a minimum of 3000 trees per month to make sure that the target is achieved
- The chief is expected to liaise with the residents of that locality including the assistant chief and Nyumba Kumi.
A total of 3.5 million tree seedlings are expected to be planted in each location in the Rift Valley region every month, Rift Valley regional commissioner Maalim Mohamed has said.
This is in line with President William Ruto's directive of planting trees across the country as a mitigation measure against climate change.
Speaking during the launch of the regional coordination committee on the national tree growing and restoration campaign in Nakuru Maalim said the national government administrative officers will lead the exercise in all 14 counties.
The steering committee will have different stakeholders such as commerce, education, the matatu and boda boda sector, religious leaders, Kenha and Kerra and the Kenya Forest Service among others.
The President launched the national tree planting during the Jamhuri day celebrations on December 12, targeting 15 billion trees to increase forest cover from 12 per cent to 30 per cent by 2030.
“The President directed the Ministry of Interior to coordinate this exercise by making sure we do the mobilisation and marshalling of Kenyans through the structure of National government administrative officers,” Maalim said.
“I have already made communication to all the county commissioners across the 14 counties who are expected to cascade this directive all the way to the sub-location.”
The Rift Valley Region has 14 counties, 87 subcounties, 246 divisions, 1159 locations and 2735 sublocations.
According to the commissioner, chiefs in all the 1159 locations are expected to plant a minimum of 3000 trees per month to make sure that the target is achieved as directed by the president.
“The chief is expected to liaise with the residents of that locality including the assistant chief, Nyumba Kumi. The chiefs will be calling for barazas every other week as they also disseminate other government policies and programmes,” he said.
He added that the government officials will make returns every month from the sublocation level to the regional commissioner who will compile achievements made for the region.
Maalim also reiterated the need to engage stakeholders and partners to achieve the target set by the president.
This will involve targeted tree-planting exercises by school-going children which will be done in collaboration with the Ministry of Education.
Kenha and Kerra will also ensure more than 4500 kilometres of roads in the Rift Valley region are targeted for tree planting.
“If we utilise the available student population of around 5 million in two seasons we will have planted more than 10 million trees. We will collaborate with the Ministry of Education to make sure this is done,” The commissioner said.
“We have more than 4500 kilometers of road in this region, if we can engage our contractors to plant trees along the road reserve then we will have added value."
The regional boss further fired a warning shot at owners of loitering animals and those who graze animals along the highway.
He cautioned the herders from frustrating the government efforts saying activities that may jeopardise the tree planting exercise will not be condoned.
The Rift Valley has an average of around 14.6 per cent forest cover with Elgeyo Marakwet leading with 37 per cent and Turkana lagging behind at 4.06 per cent.
Baringo has 25 per cent forest cover, Nakuru(9.2), West Pokot(8.3) Narok (16.6) , Nandi(16.8), Trans Nzoia(16.1 ), Kajiado(7.1), Kericho(23.5), Bomet(12.7), Uasin Gishu(7.5), Samburu(12.8) and Laikipia 6.7 percent.