The Nyeri County Commissioner (CC), Loyford Kibaara on Monday led civil servants and hundreds of residents in marking the end of the African Public Service week commemorations by planting over 2,000 tree seedlings around Mt. Kenya forest.
The exercise was aimed at supporting conservation efforts in ensuring the country achieves the required 10 percent tree cover with the County Commissioner calling on the locals to be proactive in tree planting to achieve the target.
Kibaara said though Nyeri was among the leading counties with the highest tree cover in the country at 38 percent, there was need to do more in order to increase the percentage further to up to 40 percent by the year 2022.
This, he said, could only be achieved if all residents embraced a tree planting culture and ensured they have at least 10 percent tree cover in their farms.
“We want tree planting to be a continuous process for us to achieve our target,” said the CC.
The Kenya Forest Service (KFS) has said that the opportunity to raise the country’s tree cover from the current 7.2 percent to 10 per cent lies in private lands and public institutions.
This is because forested area in the country constituted four percent of the entire land surface and thus not adequate to achieve the projected target according to KFS.
Kibaara also noted that since the ban on logging was effected, forested areas in the county that were destroyed over the years through illegal logging were on path to recovery.
He said there have been no cases of illegal logging in the county save for an attempt that was foiled by KFS guards at Kabaru Forest on Sunday night.
The celebrations were led by the Director of Administration at the Ministry of Lands, Samuel Mwati, who encouraged the members of the public to support the initiative by replicating the same in their farms.
By Samuel Waititu