A massive tree planting exercise has been launched in Migori County aimed at boosting forest cover in the region.
This effort is in line with the government policy of ensuring that the country reaches the set target of 10 per cent forest cover by 2022.
County Ecosystem Conservator Joseph Wakiaga, says the region currently has only 0.6 per cent forest cover and would like it to move fast towards fulfilling its dream of effectively conserving the environment in the area.
“As stated by this year’s theme: Panda Miti, Boresha Maisha,” we have a plan to hit the 10per cent mandatory forest cover as soon as possible,” said Wakiaga during a tree planting exercise within a land outside the Migori police station. Over 100 tree seedlings were planted during the exercise.
The chief guest of the event, Suna East Deputy County Commissioner (DDC) Kibe Maguta said the county was aiming to plant 15,000 seedlings during the ongoing rainy season.
Mr Maguta added that Migori has a total of 2,580 hectares gazetted forest cover but needs to put extra-efforts to realise the directed target of 10 per cent forest cover by the 2022.
The administrator said that farm demonstrations across the county have managed to plant 15,000 seedlings between the months of January and March 2021.
Mr Maguta stated that Nyatike Constituency alone had planted 50,000 seedlings during the dry season and 50 acres of trees in the same constituency had been regenerating after the tree harvesting.
A total of 6,000 tree seedlings have been planted in Magina hill alone within Migori town suburbs, Maguta said, adding that Equity Bank and British America Tobacco (BAT) had also agreed to partner with the county to ensure that the 10per cent of forest cover is achieved in the county.
“BAT have already donated 25,000 seedlings towards this course and the seedling will be planted on 30 acres across the county,” explained the official.
Maguta lauded the Kazi Mtaani Youths and the Kenya Red Cross for helping public institutions like schools, colleges and hospitals in planting over 18,000 trees.
The DDC disclosed that so far a total of 104,000 trees have been planted in the county. “Our main aim during this rain season is to reach the target of 133,000”, said Mr Maguta.
He urged the area residents to embrace the culture of planting trees as a retirement package for future use.
By George Agimba and Geoffrey Makokha