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Environment conservation key in addressing climate change

Government Spokesman Colonel (Rtd) Cyrus Oguna has stressed the need to conserve the environment as a way of mitigating the prolonged dry spell experienced in parts of the country.

Speaking at Olokurto ward in Narok North sub-county while presiding over a relief food distribution exercise, Oguna stated that the ongoing drought in the country is attributed to environmental degradation that is caused by cutting down trees.

“We are experiencing drought in most parts of this country because we have cut down trees leaving the vegetation cover unable to retain water. It is the responsibility of every individual to plant trees so as to boost the forest cover,” he said.

Oguna noted the conservation of Maasai Mau forest was a government’s priority as it benefits millions of people in and outside the country.

“Water is life, this is the reason the government banned all human activities at the forest and still is committed to the conservation of the great water catchment land,” he said.

His remarks were echoed by the Narok County Commissioner Isaac Masinde who said the forestland will never be encroached again under his watch.

The government has so far erected a 30 kilometer electrical fence at the forest border to caution residents against illegal entry to the forest.

“Even the evictees who are camping adjacent to the forestland with a hope of returning to the forest will never be allowed back. The government is committed to conserving the environment by all means,” he said.

Olokurto Member of County Assembly (MCA) Samuel Ole Karia thanked the government for leading in the conservation of the mega water catchment land that has seen more rainfall experienced in the area.

He also called on the residents to continue with the efforts of planting trees in their homes, churches and government institutions so as to increase the forest cover.

In the year 2018/2019, the government evicted over 5, 000 families living in the forest land in two phases reclaiming several hectares of land.

Since then, it has embarked in planting of trees where over millions of tree seedlings have been planted to rehabilitate the forest land.

By Ann Salaton

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