The national government will buy emaciated livestock from parts of Baringo County to insulate farmers against possible losses as drought ravages the area.
Speaking in Kabarnet town at the launch of the programme on Monday, Water Principal Secretary Fred Segor said the initiative aims to buy about 100,000 livestock from areas worst hit by water and pasture scarcity including Tiaty and Baringo North sub-counties.
Prof Segor noted that the project would protect livestock farmers from incurring losses while allowing them to re-stock after the long rain season starts.
"The programme will target drought-stricken areas such as Saimo Soi, Tiaty, Barwessa ,Baringo South and Mogotio,” said the PS, adding that the government had allocated funds to the Kenya Meat Commission (KMC) to enable farmers to sell their cattle to protect them from the ravaging drought.
“This programme will mainly target areas of West Pokot and Baringo counties. This is because the areas have experienced devastating drought situation,” he added.
The project has begun in 23 arid and semi-arid lands (ASAL) in devolved units including Samburu County.
Prof Segor said the livestock bought will be taken to Nairobi for slaughter.
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In late November, the chairman of parliament's Agriculture, Livestock and Co-operatives committee Adan Mohammed Noor disclosed that Sh600 million has been set aside to buy livestock from pastoral communities.
Mr Noor, who is also the Mandera North legislator, has urged livestock farmers to take advantage of the facility to sell their animals to the KMC.