Friday, October 23, 2020
PS, Dr. Chris Kiptoo addressing wananchi at the Koitaleel Samoei University in Nandi County

PS, Dr. Chris Kiptoo addressing wananchi at the Koitaleel Samoei University in Nandi County

Environment and Forestry Principal Secretary Dr Chris Kiptoo has called on Kenyans to embrace bamboo growing terming it as the “The New Cash Crop”. “The Cabinet recently approved the Bamboo as the latest cash crop in Kenya under the Crop Act 2016 and the President directed the Ministry of Environment and Forestry to come up with a Bamboo Policy in a months’ time” The PS said.

We are working hard to complete the policy which will open up bamboo market for export the PS said. “This move will ensure products such as toothpicks previously imported are sourced locally” The PS said. The PS said although partners including counties, Ministries, agencies have done a lot to grow trees across the country there is a challenge of tree seedlings.

The PS urged communities to register their tree nurseries to enable certification of the tree seedlings produced this the PS said will ensure production of quality seedlings. He intimated that The Ministry is going to source for funds from other government agencies and private sector to purchase the seedlings from the local communities. “We will not trust the quality of your seedlings if you are not certified” The PS warned.

The PS said the government has embraced tree growing in order to increase germination rate of the 1.8 billion trees needed to attain the constitutional threshold of 10%tree cover by 2022.

The PS thanked Koitaleel Arap Samoei University College (KSUC) for placing environmental conservation as key agenda in their program. PS Kiptoo was speaking today at the institution in Nandi Hills where he led a tree planting exercise where 4,000 indigenous tree seedlings were planted.

Kenya Water Towers Agency Acting Director General Prof Julius Tonui said Kenyans should be committed to protecting water sources. “We are lucky that there is plenty of rain which help trees grows naturally, In Israel trees have to be watered through drip Irrigation which is very expensive” He said. The DG said through KWTA they will marshal partners to support the KSUC to protect the spring which will provide water for the university and adjacent communities

National Environment Complaints Committee Secretary Dr John Chumo said there is need for a sewarage system in Nandi Hills to avoid a situation where the town will be in crisis for lack of it. The Secretary challenged Nandi County to increase it’s tree cover to compete with counties with better tree cover like Nyeri (38%) and Elgeiyo Marakwet (36%) saying they are able to.

Nandi County Director of Environment Vincent Mahiva who represented NEMA DG said the agency is working with the KSUC to safely remove asbestos roofing in Mosoriot campus which is a dangerous roofing solution that is feared to cause lung cancer.

Nandi County has a forest cover of 26.2% which is 16. 2% above the national target as set out in the constitution at 10% by 2022. The meeting was attended by Nandi County Deputy Governor Dr Yulita Cheruiyot Representative of PS Higher Education, Mr Dan Mesis, Nandi DCC, KSUC Ag Principal Prof Gideon Misoi, Area MCA among other leaders.

 

The PS, Dr. Chris Kiptoo, planting a commemorative tree at the Koitaleel Samoei University in Nandi Hills

The PS, Dr. Chris Kiptoo, planting a commemorative tree at the Koitaleel Samoei University in Nandi Hills

 

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