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Insurance scheme to be rolled out for farmers

Livestock farmers across the country will soon enjoy a subsidised insurance scheme for their animals, as a way of cushioning them against drought and diseases.

Livestock Chief Administrative Secretary, Lawrence Omuhaka, has said that the government was looking into an insurance scheme in which farmers are able to be compensated to afford feeds for their animals during drought.

Omuhaka regretted that the farmers had lost their livelihoods to the ongoing dry spell especially in the North Eastern parts of the country, saying the compensation will not be after they have lost stocks.

“The livestock sector accounts for about 40 percent of the agricultural Gross Domestic Product and this should not be compromised by lack of feeds. The government is working on a scheme where we will help farmers in the ASAL areas to contribute some money and the government supplements the fund to buy feeds so that the animals don’t die,” said Omuhaka.

The CAS spoke when he graced the Animal Health Industrial Training Institute’s, AHITI, graduation in Nyahururu, which saw 73 students acquire certificates in Animal Health Production, with 24 receiving Diplomas.

AHITI Principal, Dr Esther Ng’ethe, noted that the Nyandarua based institution was rolling out a programme to ensure enough fodder is grown for sale to residents.

“Inasmuch as Nyandarua prides in favourable rainfall, the institution has the capacity to grow more fodder for sale to help boost the nutrition of the animals in the county, for dairy production.

We want to be a model institution and use irrigation and rain water to grow 15 acres of Lucern, Bomarodes, Oats and other fodder crops,” she said, noting that the current cultivation was just for learning purposes as it’s done by students for practical lessons.

Nyandarua County has in the recent past witnessed a surge in the number of pastoralists seeking grazing land for their animals, with the ongoing drought exerting more pressure on its land that is the origin of the Ewaso Nyiro river basin.

By Anne Sabuni

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