Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya hosted a delegation from the Slovakia Government in his office in the effort to forge partnership on climate change and socio economic issues.
The Slovakia Embassy and partners such as Ten Senses Africa and Sote Hub are sponsoring projects in the county to mitigate climatic change and global warming.
Mvurya informed the delegation of the harsh climatic realities such as the ongoing severe drought that has taken toll on local farmers and livestock keepers.
“We have had no rain for over 12 months and most water sources have dried up,” he said and informed them what steps his administration is taking to tackle the issues.
“We supply water to zoned areas with the county water boozers. We have also built dams in collaboration with the National Government in Nyalani, Mwakalanga, Dziweni dams,” he said.
He said devolution has transformed lives at the grassroots in Kwale, with such benefits like health facilities, education bursary provision, infrastructure, and agriculture being accessible to the locals.
Mvurya said his administration is ready to partner further with investors in key socio-economic areas that will improve the people’s lives.
The county boss said they held discussion to deliberate on the cashewnut project hosted at Mwangwei area of Kwale among other projects of mutual interest.
“We have been partnering with ten senses in ensuring that farmers are offered with cashew seedlings and technical knowledge for sustainability,” he said.
Mvurya said work is in progress of bringing on board more farmers including women empowerment and youth groups to ensure that cashew is revitalized.
He welcomed renewed efforts to revive the cashew industry saying a ready market has been identified and the first consignment of cashew nuts will be transported to Slovakia.
“We will continue to join forces with stakeholders to ensure that agribusiness is well anchored in our county,” he said.
The Slovakia Ambassador to Kenya, Katarina Leligdonova, hailed Governor Mvurya’s administration for excellent performance.
“We shall extend our partnership with the devolved unit to transform lives and to sustain the environment,” she said.
Ten Senses Manager, Director Frank Omondi, and Sote Hub Representative, David Ogiga said 220,000 seedlings have been planted in the county and 6000 Kwale farmers and 50 schools issued 35,000 seedlings to plant.
Ten Senses Africa, is an East African company that manages the value chain of fair trade and organic products such as cashew and macadamia nuts from small holder farmers for export.
“At least 6000 farmers have been trained and our target is to give 10 million seedlings in Kwale for planting,” said Omondi adding that as a company they are dedicated to organic, fair trade and ethical business practices.
He said that 5000 women groups and youth were being involved to promote the environmental programme further.
Omondi said funded by the European Union, Ten Senses is implementing a cashew nut value chain project giving direct market access to over 15,000 small holder farmers and 150 schools at the Kenyan Coast.
By Hussein Abdullahi