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Over 1, 600 livestock branded in Turkana

A total of 1,600 livestock which included cattle and donkeys have been branded in a week-long exercise of livestock branding targeting Lokipoto and Nakitong’o areas of Turkana West Sub-County.

Veterinary Services Director, Benson Longor, said the livestock were branded by a joint team of officers drawn from the County Veterinary Services Directorate, National Government and Lotus Kenya Action for Development organization (LOKADO).

Longor said the Branding Stock Act of 2012 and Veterinary Services Guideline 2014, outline the County Government’s role on Livestock Identification and Traceability systems (LITs) that include conducting livestock identification using approved identification systems such as Radio Frequency Identification Devices (RFIDs), branding and microchips.

Additional roles include data upload on livestock registration, veterinary interventions, test results and movement records to the central database. The National Government on its part is supposed to undertake registration and regulation of all livestock identification systems such as brands, RFIDs and radio tracking devices.

Longor said, “I thank LOKADO for support and the department plans to brand a larger number of livestock in future with unique Turkana marks that would ease identification.”

County Deputy Director for Veterinary Services, Dr. Jane Akale, said the process had been successful, and expressed optimism that it will set stage towards rollout of more livestock branding not only in Turkana West but also to other parts of the County.

During the branding exercise planning meeting in Lodwar a few weeks ago, Lotus Kenya Action for Development organization (LOKADO), Chief Executive Officer, Augustine Kai, assured his organization support to implement the program just as it has done on peace initiatives along the Kenya-Uganda border.

By Peter Gitonga

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