East African Community, Arid and Semi- Arid Lands (ASALs) and Regional Development Cabinet Secretary Peninah Malonza has urged Meru County residents to incorporate tree planting exercises during events such as birthdays, weddings, among others to help meet 15 billion tree cover in the country.
Speaking at Kithoka primary school during the tree planting day, Malonza said that planting trees should not only be in schools and other public spaces but also in private areas so as to meet the target as fast as possible.
“Going forward, the residents must come together for this cause. We should take it as a habit to plant trees in our homes, churches, mosques among other private places and during events such as birthdays, burials, commemorations and other gatherings in order to meet our target,” said Ms Malonza.
According to Meru County Commissioner Fred Ndunga, Meru County had a target of planting 11,815,792 but they have already neared the target by planting 10 million trees and were now aiming to double the target by 2032.
CS Malonza thanked the County Commissioner for leading the residents to this achievement adding they had a potential of doubling the number just as they had planned.
“I agree with the Commissioner that we double the number so that by the end of this year, Meru will be the best in planting trees. Indeed, you are the best county in planting trees. Given a target of 11 million and you have already planted 10million, who can say that you are not the best?” the CS posed.
She encouraged the residents to also plant more fruit trees in order to resolve the issue of food insecurity in Meru and the country at large.
“We should plant fruit trees like macadamia in large numbers so that we can also form a factory here. This will uplift the lives of our people in terms of income and food security,” said Malonza.
The CS promised to escalate the issue of the residents being flushed out of lower Imenti forest to the higher offices so that their plight can be addressed.
The residents were given a chance to plant their crops in the forest as well as trees and expected to be taking care of them as they tend to their crops.
By Dickson Mwiti