TURKANA COMMEMORATES INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR ELIMNATION VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN

Lodwar, 25th November 2020— County Chief Officer for Gender and Youth Affairs Michael Eregae today presided over commemoration of International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women and launch of 16 days of activism against Gender-based violence at California Market grounds, Turkana Central Sub-County.

The United Nations General Assembly has designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.It is celebrated annually   to raise awareness of the fact that women around the world are subject to rape, domestic violence and other forms of violence.

In a speech read on her behalf, County executive committee member for the Ministry of Trade, Gender and youth affairs Esther Lokwei said that the 16 days of activism campaign wasn’t onky aimed at raising awareness around the rights of women and girls, but also at changing the cultural attitude of placing women as inferior to the male gender.

She noted that the department will work closely with gender stakeholders and civil societies to roll out campaigns on prevention emphasized that this education campaign and awareness on gender-based violence in Turkana.

She noted of progress made towards eliminating the vice but acknowledged of existing violence like sexual ones that had a negative health impact to girls in learning institutions.

Kanamkemer MCA James Ikeny said that violence had greatly increased since the onset of COVID-19 in march and called for scaling of awareness on the vice while his Township counterpart regretted thats many cases of abuse against women and girls in the society have widely remain unreported.

CEC AEMUN FLAGS OFF SUPPLEMENTARY LIVESTOCK FEEDS FOR TURKANA NORTH

Lodwar, 25 November 2020—County Executive for Agriculture, Pastoral Economy and Fisheries Philip Aemun today at Mifugo Complex flagged off vehicles carrying the supplementary Livestock feeds  that had been donated by World Relief Organization.

The intervention is  meant to protect the young ones, lactating nannies and pregnant ones from starvation and lack of key nutrients to support important body functions.

Tens of  household in Lapur and Lake zone wards will benefit from distribution of 27.5 metric tonnes of range cubes and targeted vaccination of  livestock vaccination that targets 550 households in Turkana North sub-county.

Areas selected for feeds distribution include Riokomor,Nachukui and Loarengak in Lakezone while Kaaleng,Kachoda and Karebur are the considered sites for Lapur ward.

In his remarks,CEC Aemun said that the distribution and prepositioning  of feeds to strategic areas was meant to cushion the breeding herd against death due to starvation resulted by inadequate feeds availability.

He thanked the World Relief Organization for the support that includes budgeted consultancy for drafting of Turkana County Livestock disease control policy and bill that will guide operation of diseases surveillance and response within the county.

Once it becomes law,it will entrech the roles and responsibilities of community disease reporters in livestock disease surveillance in Turkana.

On looming second wave of desert locust invasion,CEC Aemun called for vigilance and activation of surveillance tools from both the Government and development partners to avert negative socio-economic impact similar to the one experienced this year.

County Chief Officer for Fisheries,Livestock Production and Veterinary services Abdullahi Yussuf said distribution is being done at the right time  with consideration being given on drought had-hit areas and said that   additional feeds would be provided by the County Government and livestock partners.

County Director for World Relief Elias Kamau said that they will continue partnering with the County Government on enhancing pastoralist livelihoods programs on areas of economic and social importance.

This programs will include cross-breeding that targets improve increase productivity through introduction of gala goats.

County Director for Livestock Production Bobby Ekadon said other places had not benefited  factored in the next distribution plan while his veterinary services counterpart Dr. Benson Longor stated that the program will cover vaccination and deworming of more than 12000 goats and sheep.

Also present were County Director for Fisheries Robert Kibunja,Administration Deputy Director Geoffrey Apedor and several staff from the Pastoral Economy department and Fisheries.

FARMERS TO BENEFIT FROM A SH7.9MILLION COUNTY, WFP PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM

Lodwar, 23rd November 2020— Farmers from seven irrigation scheme are set to benefit from a Sh7.9 million shillings support program thats meant to revive farms that had stalled in several parts of Loima sub-county.

County Executive for Agriculture, Pastoral Economy and Fisheries Philip Aemun together with officials from World Food Programme today met with farmers, and inspected ongoing rehabilitation and bush clearing of Kolioro irrigation scheme that had been affected by prosopis.

In his remarks, CEC Aemun said that the partnership program which will benefit 3500 farmers, was meant to create resilience and get them back to their farms after destruction by flood waters and growth of mathenge that had prevented them from engaging in any farming.

The County Government and WFP under the Sustainable Food System Program have embarked on a flood-proofing of farms that were affected by flood waters in 2019 and early this year.

The County Executive, while assuring of support through distribution of certified seeds for planting and a tractor for ploughing once, insisted on the need by farmers to own development projects initiated to for realization of target and avoid wastage of funds.

He emphasized on need to grow of drought resistant crops such as sorghum that he said can withstand harsh weather condition but acknowledged of its market demand that can be sourced within and outside Turkana.

The scope of the work includes desilting of canals, bush clearing, construction of insitu rainwater harvesting structures,ploughing of farms as well as repair of canal intakes and primary canals,among others.

WFP’s food systems engineer Stephen Maingi stated quality job will be done and that implementation of the program will be done within the stipulated time-line

The first phase of the program that will include ploughing of 500 acres of farm will cover Nadapal, Kolioro, Nanyee, Kalemunyang/Kotela, Kangalita, Moruese and Napeikar in Loima Sub-Counties.

The second phase will begin next year and targets eight small irrigation schemes in Turkana South as well as six from Turkana Central Sub-County.

COMMUNITY RECEIVE GALLA GOATS IN KAALENG

Kaaleng, 10th November 2020— County Chief Officer for Fisheries,Livestock Production and Veterinary Services Abdullahi Yusuf yesterday led a team from department of Pastoral Economy and GIZ-GFA organization in distribution of galla bucks to several identified groups at Kaaleng area of Kaaleng/Kaikor ward.

In his remarks,CCO Abdullahi said that distribution of the new male goat breed was meant to increase production and productivity of livestock in Turkana that he said had been affected through inbreeding by indigenous breed of goats.

He stated that male breeds will catalyze livestock growth rate,change the ability to reproduce as well as increase milk production rate.

GIZ-GFA organization procured 100 gala bucks from Marsabit that have now been distributed to 11 groups,where 6 group in Kaaleng benefited while the remaining were distributed to other 5 groups in Nakinomet.

While calling for accountability and good management of the goats, CCO Abdullahi said that the department will continue working with stakeholders to create an enabling environment for pastoralist,enhance institutional efficiency and effectiveness of livestock development through collaboration.

CCO Abdullahi said that routine targeted vaccination and supportive treatment of livestock against diseases will continue to boost animal health in the region so that they can fetch better prizes even at the market.

County Director for Livestock Production Bobby Ekadon assured that the County Government will offer expertise on the galla goats through its technical officers, and further revealed plans to distribute supplementary livestock feeds through a collaboration with Food and Agriculture Organization(FAO)

GFA-GIZ technical advisor Frank Njogu said that the coordial relationship and cooperation with the County Government had boosted it’s efforts on implementing the organization activities in Turkana

Also present were Livestock Marketing Deputy Director Ernest Anzeze,Turkana North Sub-County Veterinary Officer John Sang and Livestock Production Officer John Ngasike.

JOINT PUBLIC PARTICIPATION OF THE SPATIAL PLANS FOR THE 8 PLANNED TOWNS IN TURKANA COUNTY.

The County Department of Lands, Energy, Housing and Urban Areas Management in collaboration with the County Assembly of Turkana’s Sectoral committee on Lands, Energy, Housing and Urban Areas Management conducted public participation on Integrated Strategic Urban Development plans for 8 towns being Kakuma, Lokichar, Lokichoggio, Lowarengak, Lorugum, Kalokol, Lokori and Lokitaung. The activity has been jointly supported by FAO in collaboration with the County Department of Lands, Energy, Housing and Urban Areas Management.

This exercise will culminate in the discussion and subsequent approval o by the Turkana County Assembly which will now unlock the process of registration, adjudication and survey for tittles in the urban areas starting with Lodwar Municipality.

HOUSEHOLDS TO BENEFIT FROM SUPPLEMENTARY LIVESTOCK FEEDS

Lodwar, 23rd September— Over 300 livestock farmers in Turkana South,Loima and Turkana Central Sub-County who keep Dairy goats (Toggenburg) will benefit from a supplementary livestock feeds distribution programme that will be undertaken by the County Department of Livestock Production in partnership with  Frontier Children Development Organization.

Agriculture, Pastoral Economy and Fisheries County Executive Philip Aemun has said that prepositioning of the Livestock feeds to sub-county reserve stores and distribution to dairy goats breeders in Angarabat and Lokapel areas  of Turkana South and KanamKemer ward in Turkana Central is meant to cushion the livestock against death due to starvation because of limited feeds and other effects like desert Locust infestation that destroyed vegetation.

Other places that will benefit from phase one of livestock supplementary feeds distribution includes Kalemnyang in Lobei/Kotaruk ward and Kekorongole in Turkwell ward of Loima Sub-County.

County Executive spoke this afternoon in Lodwar when he flagged off vehicles carrying Livestock feeds to sub-counties reserve stores for prepositioning. He emphasized on the need by households, especially those living in urban areas to keep the toggenburg goats that he said will improve households nutrition through dairy milk.

Additionally, CEC Aemun said that that distribution of the feeds will improve breeding and young stock since they are high feeders,reduce food insecurity and improve beneficiaries purchasing power through improved incomes realized from sales of surplus milk and health animals.

The County Government in FY2019/20 procured a total of 3148bags of range cubes packed in 50Kg bags. 2578 bags of Livestock feeds meant for Turkana North, Turkana Central, Kibish, Loima and Turkana Central have been stored here in the Lodwar Feeds Reserve Store while 570 bags meant for Turkana South and East Sub-Counties have been stored in Lokichar Strategic Feed Store.

CEC Aemun said apart from the feeds procured by the County Government,other partners involved in the desert locusts interventions are planning to procure supplementary feeds to cushion livestock keepers against adverse effects of pasture inadequacy resulting from desert locust invasion.

County Chief Officer for Fisheries, Livestock Production and Veterinary Services Abdullahi Yussuf said that additional intervention include plans upscale of pasture production, rangelands rehabilitation and management as well as livelihoods diversification activities such as poultry and bee keeping.

CO thanked partner organization supporting feeds distribution and directed that the supplementary feeds reach the targeted beneficiaries.

The County Livestock Production department will promote goat dairy farming to increase production and profitability to livestock farmers in Turkana.

While noting of financial and resources challenges,County Director for Livestock Production Bobby Ekadon said that the department is waiting for release of funds from the National Government so as to cover had-hit drought hotspots areas like Kalapata,Kerio Delta,Lakezone, Kalokol and Kaeris wards that are currently constrained in terms of feeds pasture availability.

Director Ekadon added that second phase which  will begin next week will be done through a collaboration under the Omo Delta program through which TUPADO will facilitate ferrying of feeds to Turkana North & Kibish while LOKADO will support prepositioning of feeds to Turkana West Sub-County.

Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) intends to support the directorate with 5000 bags of range cubes as a post locust recovery program to cushion the affected livestock species all-over the county.

In this financial year,the County Government has earmarked to construct four saleyards at Nanam,Nakalale,Kalapata and Napusimoru.

Frontier Children Development Organization which is a local Non-Governmental Organization affiliated with Child Fund has facilitated livestock production staff who will be key in distribution of the feeds to the targeted beneficiaries.

Directors Benson Longor(Veterinary Services) and Robert Kibunja (Fisheries) as well staff from the Pastoral Economy and Fisheries department attended the brief ceremony held at Mifugo Complex.

Frontier Children Development Organization Sponsor Relation Coordinator John Esibitar was also present.

LAND FOR CONSTRUCTION OF RESETTLEMENT SCHEMES IDENTIFIED

Land for construction of 44 houses that are meant to resettle communities in areas that was where insecurity caused people to abandon at Lomelo and Kamuge has been identified.

Contractors who were awarded the job have been shown the site and construction is expected to begin soon.

Initially the resettlement schemes were meant for Nadome and Kasarani areas but were relocated to Kamuge and Lomelo villages in Napeitom/Kapedo ward in Turkana East after consultation with community members and areas.

Resettlement for Kapetakinei and Ngilukia have been budgeted while ongoing projects are being done in Kaakulit and Kagitetei.

Similar structures that have been budgeted for will be constructed at Natodomeri in Kibish sub-county while Liwan, Loruth and Todonyang areas of Turkana North will benefit from the peace programme.

Other wards that will get the resettlement schemes include Namambu (Lobokat), Kaloperor (Kalapata), Nadome (Kaputir) in Turkana South while residents of Loya and Moruongor in Loima are set to benefit from the resettlement peace initiative that is under the Office of the Governor.

In Turkana West the resettlement schemes will be constructed at Loteleteit and Lokabuk in Lokichoggio and Kalobeyei wards respectively.

County Deputy Director of Peace John Lokoli who led the a team in handing over of the construction sites said that the Government was committed towards operationalization of the peace building structures that are meant to accommodate hundreds of residents that had in the past been affected by raids due to insecurity cases.

He called for support from residents towards completion of the smart villages that will include a perimeter fence,water tap and a number of semi-permanent houses depending on the identified number of targeted beneficiaries.

The construction of the infrastructures is part of the County Government agenda to secure both internal and cross-border peace with an aim of achieving a conducive environment for socio-economic development of Turkana County.

Area MCA Willy Nalimo briefed residents on the relocation of the projects and future plans of budgeting additional houses to accommodate those who will not benefit from the first phase that will be constructed in this financial year.

Also present was the Napeitom/Kapedo Ward Administrator Samuel Kitoe.

COUNTY GOVERNMENT TO CONSIDER PRIVATIZATION OF HONEY PRODUCER GROUPS AND COOPERATIVES

Lokichar, 18th September­— The County Government will weigh and consult with apiculture stakeholders on allowing private running of already mapped honey producer groups and cooperatives to scale up honey production in Turkana.

Agriculture, Pastoral Economy and Fisheries County Executive Philip Aemun has said that the Pastoral Economy department was committed to scale up investment on honey production in the County through Public-Private partnership that would not only be profitable but also sustainable to honey producers.

He decried that past cases of allowing groups run operations had failed to live up to the honey production expectations despite the favorable environment for bee keeping noting that engaging established private organization who had capacity to commercialize honey products as well as setting up processing plant for large scale honey production was a viable option.

CEC Aemun was speaking yesterday at Lokichar in Turkana South Sub-County when he officially closed a week long capacity building workshop of frontline extension workers on Apiculture. The workshop was organized by County Livestock Production Directorate and National Agricultural and Rural Inclusive Growth Project while GFA-GIZ organization facilitated consultants who taught the staff on Apiculture value chain.

The County Executive stated that the Government will review the draft livestock policy so as to strengthen the apiculture component. He said that the honey production was a worth enterprise to invest on because of its ready market and the favorable weather in Turkana that could support its production.

On his part, County Chief Officer for Fisheries, Livestock Production and Veterinary Services Abdullahi Yusuf said that Apiculture value chain hadn’t been fully tapped in the region because of some cultural beliefs associated with it.

CO Abdullahi said that honey production offered an alternative source to Livestock and Agriculture farming which are components of food security which is included in the second County Integrated Development Plan(CIDP). He appreciated NARIGP and GIZ-GFA organization for supporting the County Government on implementation of the security agenda and assured of the department support on other value chains.

Livestock Production Director Bobby Ekadon said that distribution of livestock feeds to hard-hit areas by drought would begin in the next few weeks. Restocking of goats and sheep will also be done in Lobokat and Kaputir Wards.

Last month, the County Government and World Food Programme distributed 650 bee hives to 13 producer groups under the Sustainable Food System Programme (SFSP). The County Government is focused to strengthen honey production to provide an alternative source of income and reduce pressure of dependence on ruminant livestock as a main source of livelihood.

CEC AEMUN CALLS FOR A SHIFT ON LIVESTOCK PARTNERSHIP PROGRAMMES

Lodwar, 15th September- Partners engaged in livestock production sector in Turkana have been urged to change tact in implementation of the livelihoods programmes noting to ensure they address challenges facing pastoralists in the region.

Agriculture, Pastoral Economy and Fisheries County Executive Philip Aemun has stated that the County Government will be engaging more partners to revitalize sustainable livelihoods programs and livestock production to uplift the socio-economic welfare of the pastoralists. This he said will be achieved through increased productivity and profitability on livestock products as well as market linkages in and outside the county.

CEC Aemun said that there was need for partners to align their programs with the County Government Integrated Development Plan(CIDP) especially under the component of food security, to ensure that they are impactful and cover all parts of Turkana to avoid concentrating them in one location.

The County Executive was speaking today in Lodwar when he flagged-off veterinary teams and vaccines meant for vaccination and treatment of goats and sheep that will be undertaken in Turkana West Sub-County.

CEC Aemun lauded Lokado for supporting treatment of livestock through of Sh600,000 funding, commending the cross-border element in the program for its potential to enhance effective livestock treatment and prevention of livestock diseases outbreaks along the Kenya,Uganda border.

He informed the delegation present, which included representatives from GIZ and Concern World Wide Organisation, of the County Government’s readiness to test and handle any case of livestock diseases through the Veterinary Laboratory in Lodwar as well as tracking of diseases through the e-surveillance system.

The County Government has provided vehicles, technical staff and veterinary supplies worth Sh1.2million and is targeting more than 40,000 goats and sheep in Turkana West Sub-County.

County Chief Officer for Fisheries, Livestock production and Veterinary Services Abdullahi Yussuf, while assuring of the Department’s commitment to engage livestock partners on productivity and treatment, noted that there was need to pool resources to enhance animal health in the region.

Lotus Kenya Action for Development organization (LOKADO) is a local Non-governmental organisation, formed in 2007 to improve livelihoods, well-being and food and nutrition of competing groups of agrop-pastoralist communities in Arid and Semi-Arid areas of Kenya,Uganda and Ethiopia.

Through the Global Resilience Strengthening of the Agro-Pastoralist Livelihoods in East Africa (SRAPLEA), LOKADO in collaboration with the County Veterinary Directorate will be facilitating staff for an eight-day vaccination and treatment of sheep and goats activities in Letea and Kalobeyei wards.

Others who spoke included County Directors Charles Ekai(Resource mobilization) and Dr. Benson Longor(Veterinary Services),Bobby Ekadon(Livestock Production) and Turkana West Sub-County administrator Joshua Napocho.

Also present were Deputy Directors Geoffrey Apedor(Administration), Dr. Jane Akale(Veterinary Services), John Eipa(Range Management) and Namwaya(Fisheries).

County Government staff drawn from the Pastoral Economy department attended the event held this morning at Mifugo Complex.

SONGOT COMMUNITY AGREES TO GAZETTEMENT

The Songot community will be heavily involved in the demarcation exercise to map the area to be gazetted to conserve and protect the Songot Ranges, said County Executive Committee (CEC) of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources George Emoru.

Speaking to the community leaders at Songot in Turkana West Sub-county, CEC Emoru appreciated the community for agreeing to the gazettement as it will benefit the community directly with jobs as well as attract investors.

“The county government, with our partner Mercy Corps, will also be there to support you [Songot community] to restore the degraded sites by tree planting and pasture,” he said. “This will mitigate against climate change as Songot Ranges is a major water catchment in Turkana West.”

The Songot gazettement process began last year with the community sensitisation exercises on the importance of gazetting being held periodically.

As Pauline Ngoli Pusiye, Deputy Director of Natural Resources pointed out that public participation is essential to enlightening the communities on the benefits of the county government projects.

She also urged the youth representatives present to take the message of the importance and benefits of the gazzettement back to their villages.

Kenya Forest Service’s Inspector Bernard Kisanya said that the community will be responsible in managing its conservation and protection as they will be free to enter and graze in the gazetted area.

In his remarks the Songot Member of the County Assembly (MCA) and Leader of Majority, Hon. Bethel Kobongin, said that the gazettement will give the county government the directive to support the community in its effort to conserve and protect the ranges.

The Chair of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources committee at the County Assembly and MCA Lokori, Hon. Daniel Emekwe  echoed the same and urged the community to embrace the gazettement.

In attendance were MCAs – Hon. Cosmas Longor (Nanam), Hon. Rebecca Akeno Elim (nominated) and Hon. Angeline E. Lokaala (nominated) and the area wards administrators and chiefs.