Pastoralists in Turkana county have received a boost after a non-governmental organization operating in the area gave them goats in a restocking exercise.
The initiative being spearheaded by Child Fund will cover Turkana South, Turkana North, Turkana Central and Loima sub-counties, with each identified household getting five goats.
The organization Program manager Peter Lochuch said the objective of the exercise is to support pastoralist households who have been affected by desert locusts invasion and negative economic effects of Covid-19 pandemic.
The County Executive committee member for Agriculture, Pastoral Economy and Fisheries Philip Aemun launched the goat restocking exercise Wednesday in Kanamkemer, Lodwar aimed at benefitting 126 families in the four sub-counties.
In his remarks, Aemun said the restocking program was part of the county government and partners’ agenda to support residents to rebuild themselves after negative impacts of Covid-19 and the desert locust invasion that had made the community more vulnerable due to destruction of their sources of livelihood.
“It’s one of the efforts that we have initiated with partners as recovery programme after the locust invasion. Further support will include distribution of livestock feeds, treatment of animals as well as farm tools to support farmers,” he said.
He challenged partner organizations in Turkana to galvanize government recovery efforts by pooling resources to support affected households to withstand shocks that had been caused by a range of disasters in the region.
Aemun said the Pastoral Economy department had strived to safeguard animal health through its officers considering that the nomadism was the main source of livelihoods in Turkana and part of the county government routine agenda to cushion herders against incurring socio-economic losses due to disasters.
The Chief Officer for Fisheries, Livestock Production and Veterinary Services Abdullahi Yussuf said that the department is committed in improving livestock production and productivity through its existing policies as well as partnering with other livestock stakeholders.
Kanamkemer MCA James Ikeny commended the Child Fund organization for changing strategy of implementing their programs through the community and asked for more funds to support the vulnerable households in the region.
Others who spoke at the brief event held at Child Fund offices included Directors Benson Longor (Veterinary Services), Bobby Ekadon (Livestock Production), Veterinary Services Deputy Director Jane Akale and Frontiers Child Organization Chairperson Francis Esekon.
By Peter Gitonga