Farmers from seven irrigation schemes are set to benefit from a Sh7.9 million support program that is 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 the World Food Programme (WFP) met with farmers, and inspected ongoing rehabilitation and bush clearing of Kolioro irrigation scheme that had been affected by prosopis.
Aemun said that the partnership program which will benefit 3,500 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 Programme 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 for realization of target and avoid wastage of funds.
He emphasized on the need to grow drought resistant crops such as sorghum that he said can withstand harsh weather conditions and acknowledged 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 assured that a quality job will be done and the 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.
By Peter Gitonga