The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Donate Tractors To Bungoma County 

By Tony Wafula

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has donated two tractors worth Ksh.14 million to Bungoma County to help improve the delivery of extension services and tilling farmers’ lands at a subsidized price, one tractor cost Ksh. 7 million. Addressing the media in Kimilili on Friday during the event to flagging off the tractors, Bungoma County CECM for fisheries, livestock and cooperatives development, Monicah Fedha lauded FAO for picking Bungoma for the donation noting that it will help farmers till their land on time to prepare for planting.

“Many farmers miss out on the first rains which are normally for planting because they lack tractors to till their lands, with these donations, it will give farmers time to till their land early,” she said. She added that currently, FAO is supporting many agriculture projects in Bungoma which includes a global action for the control of armyworms and fall worms a project that is being run at Mabanga Agricultural training centre, Tobacco free farms in Malakisi, Sirisia and supply of 3,000 kilograms of Nyota beans to farmers.

Bungoma deputy governor Jenipher Mbatiany

However, Fedha said that the sole purpose of bringing FAO on board is to ensure that Bungoma is producing enough food that can fit its population noting that for Bungoma to be safe 3.7 million bags of maize should be produced but instead, it produces less than 2 million bags. “Hunger has hit the Western region due to lower maize production, I have instructed all our extension officers to go to the grassroots and teach farmers the new farming techniques,” she said.

To address the food insecurity in the region, Fedha said that the Bungoma County administration donated farm inputs to 21,900 beneficiaries in the entire county. “We donated 50 kilograms of planting fertilizers, 50 kilograms of top dressing and 10 kilograms of seeds to21, 900 vulnerable farmers to ensure that there is food security,” she noted. In 2023, The CEC says that Bungoma targets to get 400,000 bags of maize from those who received planting materials from the county government.

The CECM called on farmers in Bungoma to venture into different farming practices. She also urged farmers to rear chickens noting the chicken slaughterhouse at Chwele needs raw materials. “Let us not concentrate on one type of farming, governor Lusaka has started an initiative called vuga kuku let us embrace it and fight poverty,” she said.

Ambassador Carla Mucavi, FAO representative in Kenya affirmed that the purpose of FAO working in the western region is to ensure that there is zero hunger. She told the Star that FAO is running different projects in many countries assuring that the tractors will give farmers an easy time to till their land. Bungoma deputy governor Jenipher Mbatiany who was present applauded FAO for accepting to partner with Bungoma County government with the sole aim of benefiting farmers.

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