The County Government will engage different development partners to seek support to tame increased farm invasion by Prosopis juliflora which has frustrated Government’s efforts to spur food production ,County Executive for Agriculture Philip Ebei Aemun has said.
He said that similar partnership with World Food Programme has paid off in several irrigation schemes in Loima Sub-County.
CEC Aemun decried that the invasion of irrigation schemes by Prosopis had negatively affected farming activities in Turkana making it hard for farmers to engage in large scale farming especially for farms situated along the river,with good soil for crop production.
The County Executive was speaking today at Morulem when he separately met and interacted with farmers of Morulem and Lotubae irrigation schemes in Lokori-Kochodin ward,Turkana East Sub-County.
He assured farmers of Government commitment to improve farm infrastructure including the river protection work along R.Kerio,provision of seeds ,and tractors to help in ploughing farm land ahead of the planting season.
County Engineers will soon visit the site to assess the situation of the dykes, and draw a new design for River protection works ,now that the river seems to have changed the course.
CEC Aemun who is in a working tour of Turkana East following Governor Nanok’ last year stakeholders meeting direction for a follow up of development projects by Senior Government Officers,called for prioritization of sorghum and groundnuts growing,because of its ready market availability.
County Director for Agriculture Paul Lokone said that his docket through the Agri-business directorate would connect farmers to potential buyers to enable them sell their produce to generate income.
He added that they will provide technical guidance on best seeds varieties that fits the Turkana soil.
The team also met enumerators who were recently recruited to register farmers who will benefit from e-voucher program that’s being supported by the National Government’s Ministry of Agriculture.
The e-vochoure system ,which is being done in 25 counties including Turkana is intended to support farmers with inputs through the agro-vets . The Government will cater for 40% of the cost ,and rest will be shouldered by the registered farmers.
It will be undertaken in Kaputir and Lokori-Kochodin wards of Turkana South and Turkana East Sub-counties respectively.
CEC Aemun emphasized on the need by the team from the National Government to do more sensitization to farmers on farm inputs cost-sharing plan ,to manage expectations of the project as well as its sustainability.
He noted that priorities of selected counties are different hence the need to strengthen engagement with benefiting farmers.
Morulem irrigation scheme chairman Philip Esinyen called for mechanical and farm inputs support from the County Government towards their planned planting of sorghum on more than 400 acres of farm as well as milling of the sorghum crop, before its release to the market this year.
Also present were staff from Turkana East led by Sub-County Administrator Reuben Eleo.