Farmers are the major contributors to the stabilization of the country’s food and nutritional security, therefore the government should not spare any effort in building sustainable climate-smart agriculture.
The Nakuru County Chairman for Kenya National Farmers’ Federation (KENAFF) Luke Kessei has said their members bear the greatest burden in turning around the country’s socio-economic transformation, as envisaged in the Vision 2030.
Speaking during a press conference at the KENAFF offices in Nakuru Monday, Kessei said despite agriculture and related industries contributing 26 % and 27% of the country’s GDP directly and indirectly and employing more than 40% of the total population, while also accounting for 65% of Kenya’s export earnings, the national budget funding to the sector is still less than 10%.
The chairman noted with concern, that the national budget allocation to the agricultural sector has never achieved Kenya’s international commitment of 10% to enable the country to achieve the much-desired food security.
At the same time, local farmers are responsible for the rural livelihoods, as they provide employment for the many unemployed youths, thus generating income for more than 80% of the country’s rural population.
However, according to Kessei, whenever budgets are shared out their enormous contribution is not reflected in the figures allocated to the key sector.
He reminded the national and county governments of their moral constitutional responsibility of upholding Article 43 (1c), which requires them to designate agriculture and the food sector as paramount national security matter.
By Veronica Bosibori