Narok residents have been challenged to plant trees as a way of commemorating the second president of Kenya the late Daniel Arap Moi.
Narok Ecosystem conservator Mr. Mwai Muraguri said the late Moi had a passion for the environment and would often encourage people to plant trees in a bid to conserve the environment.
“It is so evident that the late Mzee Moi had a special heart for the environment by the way he led people in planting trees in various occasions. We should emulate his example by planting at least one tree each in remembrance of his life,” said Mr. Muraguri.
The Ecosystem Conservator spoke today from his office where he said the tree coverage in the county was 16 percent because of the presence of the expansive Maasai Mau forest in the county.
“The tree coverage in our individual homes is less than ten percent. But we are lucky to host the Mau forest that boost our county tree coverage,” said Muraguri.
He said they are working with non-governmental organizations to plant trees in all institutions to boost tree coverage to 18 per cent.
Muraguri reiterated his department is sensitizing farmers to plant at least 64 trees per acre, which will make the 10 percent coverage in the piece of land.
“Even though our county is famous for planting wheat, barley and maize, we want to encourage farmers to plant a tree at a distance of ten meters by ten meters which will easily achieve the ten percent tree coverage in the piece of land.
The ecosystem conservator lamented a lot of efforts and talks were directed towards the Mau Forest yet individual farmers were doing very little to boost the forest cover.
“Uganda has a tree coverage of 30 percent, Tanzania 15 percent while Kenya is lagging behind the two countries at 7.22 percent. Each one of us has a duty to ensure the tree coverage reach 10 percent.
At the same time, a group of women who formerly sold charcoal to earn a living have quit their job and started small-scale business in a bid to conserve the environment.
The women came out in large numbers to plant trees in Koonyo and Siyiapei primary schools in Narok East Sub County as a way of proving that they will protect the environment instead of cutting down trees.
Led by Rahab Kenana, the women said they have organized themselves into groups in a bid to access funds given by the government like women enterprise fund, Uwezo fund and National Government Affirmative Action Fund that is given through the women representative office.
“We will use the little money we get to start small businesses like goat keeping, bead work and poultry rearing,” said Ms. Kenana.
By Ann Salaton