6 counties to share 62,000 bags of maize from Galana Kulalu project


Six counties in the coastal region will benefit from 62,000 bags of maize harvested from the Galana Kulalu irrigation project.

Speaking during the handover ceremony, Devolution Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri said the harvest would go towards feeding locals facing starvation.

This being the third harvest at the Galana Kulalu food security project, the project has been given thumbs up after achieving an average harvest of 31 bags of maize per acre.

“We are pleased with this harvest we are going to hand over the maize to Kiunjuri, so that special programmes people can handover the maize to the counties and we are starting with Tana River and Kilifi,” said Wamalwa

Other counties expected to benefit include Kwale, Lamu, Mombasa and Taita Taveta.

The maize will be distributed as relief food to an estimated 1.3 million Kenyan in 23 ASAL counties that are said to be facing acute food shortage.

“ The special programmes department has also released 90,000 bags of rice for the next three months, 30,000 beans and oil we expect Kenyans to have a balanced diet,” said Kiunjuri.

Experts at the project have reduced the maize varieties being planted to four, with the project targeting to realize an average of 40 bags of maize per acre.

The irrigation supported project has however over time been criticized and described as a flop, but according to water and irrigation CS Eugene Wamalwa, proper infrastructure is key in realizing the irrigation supported project’s full potential of 1.5 million bags of maize.

“We are not just going to wait for rain, we must develop our irrigation infrastructure to be able to meet the challenge of climate change over growing population and the need to produce enough food for Kenyans,” said Wamalwa.

The project is part of the Jubilee Government’s plan to put 1 million acres of land under irrigation by the year 2017.

 

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Story By Patrick Igunza
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