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Mathenge Tree menace

Mathenge tree and its weeds has caused untold suffering to residents in ijara, Hulugho Sub County.

The residents have raised concern over the death of their animals after feeding on the plant and added that it has rendered their goats toothless.

They further said the thorns of the plant contain poison that if the residents are pricked they have to tolerate non healing oozing wounds adding that the medical facilities were kilometers away and could not access a tetanus injection on time.

In an interview carried by KNA Saturday, several residents complained of excruciating pain they undergo when pricked by the poisonous mathenge thorns that penetrate the human flesh pointing out that it has led to some residents being amputated due to lack of prompt access to medical facilities for tetanus jab.

The locals decried the effects of mathenge tree weeds whose roots penetrate through buildings, creating cracks in the walls and floor forcing the owners to consistently incur costs of repairs.

According to the forest officer Mr. Hassan Calasow the tree was supposed to serve as windbreak and when mature be used as charcoal fuel for the local communities and they did not anticipate such disastrous effect on the animals and humans.

He appealed to the county government of Garissa to ensure measures which had been put in place to eradicate the troublesome tree are effected and that the tree is cut down and burnt to ensure it does not grow again.

Ijara Sub County Administrator Mr. Hajir Ahmed said in the last financial year funds were availed to clear the tree and expected more funds from the county in order to eradicate the Mathenge weeds menace completely.

Mr Hajir said the tree roots had destroyed even roads by penetrating in the existing tarmac and murram roads in ijara, Hulugho, Garissa and Tana River county side.

The mathenge weeds menance has also affected the nutrients of the soil surrounding it and choking other plants.

By Dahir

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