Vihiga Residents Encouraged To Venture Into Indigenous Vegetable Farming

Residents of Vihiga County have been urged to venture into indigenous vegetable farming to improve their living standards.

Speaking during a field inspection tour in one of the farms at Jeptorol, Hamisi Sub County, Vihiga County Anglican Development Services (ADS) Coordinator Lydia Khayongo advised residents to plant indigenous vegetables, which would guarantee more money.

Khayongo said if the farmers could form groups, they could sell the indigenous vegetables to Nairobi, where they were on great demand and this could earn them higher income.

She said in Vihiga County, ADS Western has partnered with the Bukura Agricultural College to train 14 women groups in five value chains including indigenous vegetables farming, poultry farming, fish farming, dairy farming and tissue culture banana farming.

The Coordinator said Mugumu Support Women Group in Hamisi Sub County is one of the groups that has been trained in indigenous vegetables farming, asking them to train other residents to use modern farming techniqu

She encouraged them to make use of the poultry and dairy project manure to enrich the vegetables, which would improve their quality and quantity.

The groups have also been trained on how to make organic fertilizer, using locally available material.

Khayongo now wants the groups to improve the quality of their farms and sell the surplus produce to help them to earn extra money.

One of the group members Debora Kedogo thanked ADS Western for training them saying youths and women can now get their own money, which has empowered them economically.

Source: Kenya News Agency

The British Army Continues To Receive Sharp Criticism Over Crimes Committed In Laikipia

The British Army has continued to receive sharp criticism over alleged atrocities committed in Laikipia County.

Speaking in Doldol on Wednesday in an event attended by British High Commissioner to Kenya Neil Wigan, Laikipia North Member of Parliament Sarah Korere slammed British Army Training Unit (BATUK) claiming that their presence in Laikipia County was not beneficial.

‘As it is today, the British Army are only training in settlers’ farms not minding they trained in our land for 40 years without paying a cent and we are asking of your kind government not to pay us anything but do something in kind to show that we hosted you for the longest time,’ she said.

She pointed out her constituents have lagged behind in education and only allowed to attend school four years to independence hence the high illiteracy level in the area.

‘To be precise, this is the place where, during colonial era, the Maasai of Mukogodo were never allowed to go to school, we were allowed four years to independence and that is why w
e are lagging behind,” she claimed.

The lawmaker said that BATUK needed to take responsibility over atrocities committed or else they would be charged in a court of law.

She urged the UK government to support infrastructure including schools adding education was the only way to accelerate development in the region. ‘The only thing that is going to accelerate our development faster is education and I am asking we partner with your government to make sure we boost education in this area through schools’ infrastructures among others,” she said.

The British High Commissioner however steered clear of the atrocities claimed by the legislator and left moments after making his remarks.

Source: Kenya News Agency

EACC Recovers Grabbed Public Land In Nyahururu

The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has recovered and reverted to the government a 2.5-acre piece of land valued at Sh.110 million that some 12 private individuals had grabbed in Nyahururu Sub-County, Laikipia County.

According to the EACC, the land had been reserved for the Nyahururu bus park and had been irregularly, illegally and unlawfully alienated to favour private individuals. The parcel of land that had been earmarked for the construction of a multi-million Mall has now been reverted to the Laikipia County Government which is the rightful owner.

EACC Spokesperson Eric Ngumbi revealed that the land parcels, cumulatively measuring 2.5 acres with a current market value of approximately Sh110 million, were illegally allocated to private individuals who had commenced commercial developments including the construction of a mega shopping mall when EACC moved in.

Addressing the press from the site of the recovered property in Nyahururu, Ngumbi said that the Commission, through its Central Regi
onal Office in Nyeri, launched investigations upon receipt of a complaint from Mitumba traders in Nyahururu Town on 21st February, 2022.

The complainants had reported that the land reserved for extension of Nyahururu Bus Park, which the traders were using, had been irregularly, wrongfully, illegally and unlawfully allocated to private developers who had commenced construction of commercial building and were evicting the traders.

Speaking at the same event Nyahururu Mitumba Traders led by their Chairman Peter Maina Mwangi thanked the EACC for saving them from eviction by the grabbers and urged the Commission to assist in recovery of all the other plots grabbed in the area. They called upon the County Government to develop the land recovered by EACC for use by the traders.

‘Were it not for determination and the zeal to pursue the matter in court and with the relevant agencies, the land could have been grabbed and developed, and thus denying the mitumba traders a place to conduct their businesses,’ said Maina

The commission ascertained that there was unlawful alienation of the land to favour private individuals and reported the matter to Nyahururu Environment and Lands Court in an attempt to recover the grabbed land.

Investigations had shown that the land in question had been donated by the Catholic Archdiocese of Nyeri for the construction of Ngare Naro Primary School in 1972.

However, in 1984 the now defunct Nyandarua County Council working with the then commissioner of lands hived off 2 acres of the land for the expansion of the Nyahururu bus park with a disclaimer to the school that if the land was not used in the expansion of the bus park it would be reverted back to the school.

Through underhand dealings, the Nyandarua County Council working with the then commissioner of lands subdivided the land into 12 portions and letters of allotment issued to private individuals.

According to EACC, under the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) negotiations, the defendants who were the allottees agreed to volunta
rily surrender the title documents to the commission.

Six grabbers had already begun developing the parcel of land in a joint venture to construct a shopping mall and were at the foundation stage by the time the EACC struck.

Following the finalization of the ADR Process in November 2023, the Court delivered a consent Judgement and issued declarations and orders revoking all the titles held by the 12 individuals.

The Court further issued a permanent injunction restraining all the defendants, their agents, servants or any other person acting on their behalf from any dealings with the land parcels except by way of surrender back to the Government.

The Commission is currently in the process of transferring the land back to Laikipia County Government.

‘The Commission has since written to the Land Registrar to rectify the land Register by cancelling all entries relating to the defendants and issue new titles in the name of Laikipia County Government, as ordered by the Court.

‘The Commission has 10 other recov
ery suits before the Nyahururu Environment and Land Court seeking recovery of Government land and houses in Nyahururu,’ said Ngumbi.

Among them is the land worth Sh.200 million hosting the Agricultural Mechanization Services (AMS) established in 1946 to support potato farmers through subsidized hire of plant and tractor services.

Three private developers have grabbed the land and obtained titles even with the machinery on site.

Source: Kenya News Agency

Nyamira Hosts 12 Counties To Benchmark On Their Children Policy And PWDs Act 2023

Nyamira County is hosting 12 counties for a peer to peer exchange forum to learn from its Child Policy 2023 and Persons with Disabilities (PWD) Act 2023.

Governor Amos Nyaribo while officially opening the forum at Viongozi pastoral center in Nyamira stated that it is through cordial collaborations and efforts that communities, counties and nations grow and develop and therefore urged the visiting counties to make best use of the exchange forum and pick best practices which they can domestic in their home counties to come up with Child policies and PWD Acts.

‘For the two day’s that you will be around, you’ll have an opportunity to learn the processes, negotiations, give and take approaches that enabled us to have these two documents within the same year. We are also looking forward to picking up various experiences from your counties, learning and adapting more efficient implementation modalities of our Child Policy and PWD Act.’ said the Governor

Nyaribo affirmed that he supported the process of the two do
cuments because of the many benefits it will accord Nyamira residents noting that investing in children now by safeguarding their rights is an assurance of a bright future for them, the more reason why their well-being should be jealously guarded. Further he observed that the PWD are the world’s largest marginalized group revealing that in Nyamira alone there are 17,549 PWDs.

‘These marginalized groups grapple with stigma and poverty due to outright discrimination by the community. The PWD Act therefore provides for the establishment of a board that will ensure their rights are protected and empower the county government to allocate resources towards programs that will support them thereby accelerate the disability affirmative action of inclusivity and opportunities for everyone for a robust economic growth.’ He confirmed.

The county Boss noted that the process did not fall short of challenges and thus the forum would give delegates from participating counties a platform to share challenges encountered and
receive advice and possible solutions to help fast track the implementation process.

‘Since it’s a peer-to-peer learning forum, we are also looking forward to hearing from your counties. For those who have started the process to have a similar Act or Policy, we are eager to hear if you have probably found a shorter or easier way that we can adopt, offer each other advice and possible solutions to challenges to help fast track the process to its end.’ The Governor said

Nyaribo commended the relentless support by partners in enabling counties to realize the aspirations of devolution especially those that benefit vulnerable households in communities. He thanked partners from Changing The Way We Care (CTWWC) who tirelessly supported them through thick and thin till the county realized the formation of the Child policy 2023 and PWD Act 2023. He requested them to continue with the partnerships in programmes geared towards improving the lives of the people of Nyamira and beyond.

Nyanza regional director for child
ren services, Jemin Konyango commended Nyamira County for their initiative of ensuring that the vulnerable groups in the society are protected by law and a budget allocated to ensure their programmes are implemented.

‘Leaders who ensure all their subject’s needs are met exponentially grow their economies and grow a happy society. I congratulate Nyamira Governor for his support of the vulnerable and marginalized people in his county which has compelled other counties to come and learn so they can equally implement the same in their respective counties because they have realized that it’s only through legislation that affirmative action by governments can be achieved.’ Said Konyango.

Mr. Timon Mainga, the program manager at Catholic Relief Services (CRS) implementing Changing The Way We Care (CTWC) programe in Nyamira appreciated the Governor for giving them an opportunity to support them during the formulation of the Child Policy and Persons With Disability (PWDs) Act which are now bearing fruit.’We are exci
ted as partners to have collaborated and networked to this end. The synergy between Nyamira government and partners has been seamless. The teamwork was commendable and we promise to continue this partnership and support to ensure that we alleviate the vulnerable members of our society from suffering.

The 12 counties participating in the two-day peer to peer learning forum in Nyamira county include; include Kisii, Kisumu, Siaya, Migori, Bungoma, Homabay, Vihiga, Busia, Kakamega, Kilifi, Kakamega and Mombasa.

Source: Kenya News Agency

1,500 Trees Seedlings Planted In A School In Loima Sub County

Government officials in Turkana County joined teachers and students of David Lee Lee Adventist Nagis secondary school in planting 1,500 tree seedlings in line with the government agenda of growing 15 billion trees by 2032.

County Commissioner Julius Kavita represented interior cabinet secretary Prof Kindiki Kithure who was expected to be the chief guest.

He was accompanied by County executive committee members for Tourism, Culture, Natural Resources and Climate Change Leah Audan and her Public Service, Administration, and Disaster Management counterpart Wangiros James.

The county commissioner commended the school management for ensuring the discipline exhibited by the students and embracing tree growing initiative.

County executive committee members for Tourism, Culture, Natural Resources and Climate Change Leah Audan said there was a shift from mere planting of tree seedlings to ensuring their growth.

Audan noted that the county has been affected by climate change as witnessed in floods and drought and
called on all residents to embrace tree growing.

County forest conservator Richard Guya emphasized the need for nurturing trees to maturity.

‘The essence of tree growing is planting the trees, protecting them against livestock destruction and ensuring they are watered to maturity,” Guya reiterated.

He added that the 15 billion tree growing program also involves growing fruit trees to address food security as well as meet nutrition needs of the communities.

Grafted mango tree seedlings, guava and custard apple trees will also be grown in the school.

The conservator at the same time rooted for conservation of the existing trees across the county saying felling the trees would reduce tree coverage.

‘Let us get alternative sources of livelihoods to ensure we conserve and protect our livelihoods,’ he added.

A Form one student, Rebbeca Okaya said she had so far planted four trees and pledged to ensure they grow to maturity by the time she complete her four years stay at the school.

Her sentiments were echo
ed by Nikor Brani Matesa a form two student who has planted two tree seedlings and pledged to protect and water them to maturity.

Source: Kenya News Agency

Kenya To Adopt A Community Approach In The Fight Against Violent Extremism

The National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) is seeking to adopt a community approach in deterring Violent Extremism and radicalization in the country under a new strategy aimed at combating terrorism and related terror activities.

NCTC Director Dr. Rosalind Nyawira while closing a two-day workshop on the review of the National Strategy to Counter Violent Extremism at a Nanyuki hotel, said that the review was informed by the ineffectiveness of the previous strategy adopted in the year 2016, but the changing dynamics of terror activities has necessitated the adoption of new tactics and approaches.

‘There’s a need to refresh the strategies developed in 2016, eight years is a long time and due to the changing and dynamic nature of Violent Extremism we must come up with new ideas if we are to stay ahead of terrorists,’ Dr. Nyawira noted.

She further noted that the conflict between Israel and Palestine posed increased terror threats to Kenya therefore the need for heightened vigilance by security apparatus.

iolent Extremism globally has gone virtual whereby you find radicalization, recruitment and training is often done online, therefore there is also a need as a country to regulate technology use to tame the same,’ the NCTC Director observed.

She noted that under the new strategy being formulated, there would be a shift from pillar-oriented approaches to working groups in the County Engagement Forums (CEFs) that would become the primary organs for implementation in the fight against terrorism.

The strategy aims at empowering counties to tackle their own unique challenges that can be exploited by violent extremists.

The workshop that drew participants from the seven counties of Embu, Kirinyaga, Nyeri, Laikipia, Meru, Isiolo and Marsabit heard that the new strategy seeks to have male mentors to guide the youth as well as creation of women networks to act as early warning systems since mothers are better placed to detect changes in children behavior.

‘There is also a need to create resilience to children from
broken families by religious leaders since the disturbed young ones are more prone to radicalization,’ Dr. Nyawira said.

Laikipia County Commissioner Onesmas Kyatha observed that there was need to look at gaps at local levels that are being exploited by violent extremists. ‘These terrorists don’t sleep, they plan all the time until they hit their target,’ he said.

The CC further observed that there was a need to address issues of marginalization among some communities that the terrorists exploit to recruit members.

Director Dr. Micahel Mugo Foundation for Dialogue, a lead agency in the implementation of the strategies to fight violent extremism, noted that the community approach proposed in the new strategy would go a long way in taming terrorism.

‘We are seeking to change the terrorists’ narrative by engaging the community from the lowest levels in society so that information on suspicious happenings can be shared promptly with relevant authorities,’ Dr. Mugo said.

Dr. Mugo further said that the new str
ategy sought to enhance economic opportunities for youth at risk of recruitment by terrorists.

‘An educated and idle youth can easily be motivated to do anything, therefore the need to engage them in meaningful economic activities to deter them from recruitment to Violent Extremism,’ he added.

The updated strategy aims to increase the involvement of women, youth, and male mentors as front liners in preventing and countering violent extremism (PCVE) in communities.

Input will also be sought from civil society organizations and academia to ensure a comprehensive approach to the strategy.

Source: Kenya News Agency