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Farmers to benefit from private investment once the modern slaughter house is operational

Isiolo County plans to privatise a modern slaughterhouse which is almost 95 per cent complete in order to improve livelihoods of local farmers and county revenue.
Speaking during a stakeholder’s workshop on private sector participants from animal health services, Isiolo Governor Dr. Mohamed Kuti said that his government plans to privatise the abattoir and revive rangelands and boreholes so as to prevent diseases.
The governor said that there are about 1.79 million livestock in Isiolo which was adequate to create a sizable number of employment to youth and women if exploited well.
He urged herders to form cooperatives and exploit the business opportunities that go along well with the sub-sector which could be a leading provider of skilled and unskilled employment.
Dr. Kuti said that his administration had increased budget allocation of livestock department and also would increase manpower and capacity building since it was a major source of income to locals and county revenue.
The governor promised to apply maximum disease control measures and increase vaccinations so as to address the animal health problems.
“We are going to ensure that the 124,000 hectares is set aside as a holding ground for infected animals from where they can be monitored for diseases and also fatten them,” he added.
He also noted that most herders keep livestock for social purposes and said that the County government was partnering with private sectors aiming at increasing the number of professionals to advice the herders and change their perspective to commercial purposes.
The governor said that the participation of the private sectors in animal health will significantly contribute to increased productivity, increased income for animal value chain actors and improved livestock health through quality vaccines and treatment.
The County Executive member for agriculture, livestock and fisheries, Dr. Lawrence Mwongela said that the main challenge the herders faced were disorganised livestock market and lack of attractive loaning facilities.
He said if herders were to engage in alternative income generating opportunities like honey farming and commercialising feeds and manure, it would be a good source of income for them.
Dr. Mwongela advised all herders to insure their cattle for proper risk mitigation saying that the insurance does not only pay when the cattle die but even when there was prolonged failure of the short and long rains.
He revealed that sh.1 million was paid to herders mostly from Central and Oldonyiro and who had insured their cattle and suffered from drought and called on other farmers to cover their animals too.
By Doris Mumo/Abduba Mamo

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