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Counties

FAO gives coast flood victims farm input, equipment

Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi (center) accompanied by Food And Agriculture Organization
Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi (center) accompanied by Food And Agriculture Organization (FAO) representative Mr Gabriel Rugalema flagging off trucks carrying satisfied seeds on September 13, 2018. PHOTO | CHARLES LWANGA | NMG 

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in collaboration with government Thursday distributed seeds and farm inputs to more than 78,000 flood victims in Malindi and Magarini.

FAO representative in Kenya Gabriel Rugalema said the seeds and hoes will help in enhancing food security for flood victims after their homes, crops and livestock were swept away by floods four months ago.

In March, more than 86,000 people in Tana River and Kilifi counties were displaced by floods after River Tana and Sabaki broke their banks following heavy downpour upstream.

Speaking at Kilifi during the distribution activity commissioned by Governor Amason Kingi, Mr Rugalema revealed that FAO donated Sh50.5 million (US$500,000 dollars) to assist three flood hit counties.

“In Turkana, the focus on rehabilitating micro-irrigation scheme, Tana River is on farm input, seeds and livestock drugs particularly to control parasites such as ticks and mosquitoes that spread Rift Valley Fever, while in Kilifi we focus on seeds and farm equipment,” he said.

FAO is a specialized agency of the United Nations that serves both the developed and developing countries in the fight against hunger.

On his part, Mr Kingi who was accompanied by his county executive members and chief officers said the county government has called upon residents to invest in acreage farming to enhance food security.

“In order to facilitate food security for residents, we embarked on encouraging acreage farming where we provide tractors, seeds and fertilisers then encourage farmers to grow crops in large scale farming,” he said.

Mr Kingi said it is unfortunate that residents living along River Sabaki who were practicing irrigation farming suffered losses due to floods and pledged support them and ensure they regain their initial state.

“We encourage irrigation farming along the river since it is a source of food and income,” he said adding “we are looking for ways to assist farmers whose crops and water pumps were swept away by floods to enhance food security.”

The governor directed the agriculture extension officers to go to the ground to make a follow up in order to assist and advise farmers on best farming methods to ensure high yields.

Ms Luciana Jumwa, the Agriculture County Executive (CEC) urged residents to take advantage of the short rains to grow food crops before the drought begins in December.

“Residents should plants certified seeds of crops like maize and especially vegetable along the river among others which can bring income of even about Sh500,000,” she added.

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