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Farmers urge the County government to set up fertiliser pick-up points in their villages

A number of Bomet farmers have urged the county Agricultural sector and Bomet leaders to distribute fertilisers to all sub-counties.

They said that most farmers at the moment have to travel for many kilometres to Bomet town to get the input which in turn is very costly.

“We are struggling to get fertiliser not because they are out of stock but because the distance and transport cost is straining our resources,” said Peter Cheruiyot from Konoin Sub-County.

Cheruiyot said he has been forced to spend a lot of money traveling due to long queues at the Cereals and Produce Board Offices. He further stated that decentralising the distribution of fertilizer would save them a lot of time and money.

“We travel daily from far-flung areas to come and wait to get the inputs and sometimes we come for a whole week due to long queues experienced at deports and other fertiliser picking points,” he said.

Cheruiyot said the County leadership led by Governor Hillary Barchok should move with speed and set up fertiliser stalls all the way to the ward levels.

“There is nothing difficult in setting up the stores, the County Government has offices in all the wards and they should turn them into distribution zones for fertiliser from the Ministry of Agriculture,” he added.

John Bore from Chepalungu said the subsidisation aspect by the National Government was losing its meaning to them because of the traveling cost. Bore added that many farmers are opting to buy expensive fertilizers from local Agrovet shops and distributors because of the traveling costs and added headache of queueing for days on end.

He further added that it was sad that farmers’ pleas and grievances to the relevant authorities were going unattended.

“We have been pushing for the County Government to set up stores in our wards from the time the subsidized fertilisers were available but nothing has been done which has forced some of the farmers to buy this precious commodity from the local stockist despite being expensive,” added Bore.

Bomet County farmers rely on two NCPB stores in Bomet town and Ndanai in Sotik Sub County.

More than 250,000 farmers from the County who have registered for this government-subsidized fertilizer are forced to get this farm input from the only two NCPB depots in the County which has caused a backlog.

However, Bomet Governor Hillary Barchok while launching the ongoing listing of farmers promised to address this problem that farmers have faced.

He said the ongoing listing of farmers will give clear information on where distribution centers will be set up.

“As you are aware, there is an ongoing listing of farmers and one of the things we are seeking to know is the nearest centers for every farmer so that we can set up fertiliser stalls and pick points to bring services closer to farmers.,” said Barchok.

The Governor while pleading with farmers to be patient said soon, they will get the fertilizers and other inputs from the government at their doorsteps.

“We understand the challenge as the government and it is only a matter of time before the issue is resolved,” he added.

By Eddah Mutai


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