The department of Agriculture, Food Security, Livestock and Fisheries has pledged to work hand in hand with various research organizations to enhance technological advancement in agriculture to promote sufficient food production since agriculture still stands to be the back bone of the Kenyan economy.
Speaking during a field day organized by the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) at Kisumu’s Kibos ground, the County Minister for Agriculture, Food Security, Livestock and Fisheries Hon. Gilchrist Owuor Okuom, stated that the County Government of Kisumu is keen in investing more resources in Agriculture since it is the leading pillar for the Country’s big four agenda.
The field day which brought on board a number of stakeholders showcased various farming technologies available for use by the practising and potential farmers to enhance high productivity.
The director General for KALRO Dr. Elude Kirege, urged Kisumu residents to embrace modern farming technologies and also invest more on research findings to boost their agricultural produce. He added that KALRO has 16 research centres nationally dealing with animal services, value edition, and promotion of modern technologies in agriculture,
KALRO receives Ksh 4.8 Billion from the National Government yearly and an addition of Ksh 2 Billion from the Donors to enhance agricultural productivities and sufficient research studies.
By Erick Omollo
Counties and the National government have embarked on a joint initiative that seeks to address the rapid degradation of lake basins across the country.
The move will see the ministry of environment set up a national lake basin management secretariat with county governments mobilizing funds for their respective operations.
In a stakeholders meeting held at the Vic Hotel, Kisumu it was widely agreed that weak policies in environmental management had accelerated pollution levels in the country’s water bodies.
Uncontrolled pollution and effluent discharges from domestic households was highlighted as one of the major contributors to the degradation of water basins.
According to Prof. Daniel Olago, from the Institute for Climate Change and Adoption, the Department of Geology at Nairobi University, Lake Victoria has got enormous potential but weak policies on its management had turned it into a floating dump site.
The pronouncements comes in the wake a of county wide ban by the environment department on washing of all motorized vehicles and equipments on beaches and shores of lake Victoria among other water bodies in the county.
In a proposed draft by the participants, industry players had to think strategically and involve like minded players in organizing awareness campaigns that redressed the issues bedevilling the lake basins.
Kenya consists of five major basins: Lake Victoria, Rift Valley, Athi River, Tana River and Ewaso Nyiro. The renewed support from the national government could be a game changer in changing the basins fortunes.
By Collins Owuor
A score from Dennis Ochieng and other two goals from Shadrack Omondi and Austine Ochieng saw Kisumu All Stars display an impressive comeback against Kangemi All Stars at Moi Stadium, Kisumu.
The Kangemi lead was curtailed when Omondi levelled the scores in the 44th minute. Dennis Ochieng scored from the spot which resulted from a challenge against Muyela Amunga in the penalty area.
He scored another one in the 66th minute before Austine Ochieng wrapped it up in the 80th minute.
The Embu County Department of Tourism this week paid a visit to the County Minister, Achie Alai, in an effort to benchmark with Kisumu tourism sector.
The team led by Embu County Minister for Tourism, Trade and Industrialization Mr. David Kariuki was in the county to benchmark on matters tourism management at the county level and leveraging on resources in a bid to position Embu county in the Kenya’s tourism Circle.
Waziri Achie Alai together with Ag. Chief Officer Thomas Ouko shared with the team on steps taken by Kisumu in marketing the region as the entry point to the Lake Region Economic Bloc in addition to being a major tourism destination.
Health services in Kisumu County got a major boost after medical equipment worth Ksh 35 million shillings was donated to the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital (JOOTRH) following a joint initiative between the Governor and the World Medical Relief organization based in the U.S.
The equipments are to be used at the facility and other medical centers in the region as the county government embarks on a robust approach to upgrade its health facilities.
Speaking during the commissioning, County Governor Prof. Anyang’ Nyong’o lauded the developments as he promised to engage stakeholders in streamlining health services in the county.
Following the successful Universal Health Coverage launch in Kisumu, JOOTRH is on track to receive major upgrades. The modernization process will see the facility offer new services that include advanced neurological services, key hole surgery, endoscopy and improved health information systems.
Infrastructural improvements will see the facility have emergency and trauma centres with a corresponding surgical complex and the installation of ultra modern imaging machines to be completed by end of February this year.
By Collins Owuor
THE UNIVERSAL HEALTH COVERAGE PROGRAM LAUNCHED
The Universal Health Coverage (UHC) Pilot Program was officially launched this week at the Mamboleo Showground in Kisumu.
The event which was presided over by President Uhuru Kenyatta saw all the Governors from the four pilot Counties of Kisumu, Nyeri, Isiolo and Machakos sign a commitment agreement for the implementation of the UHC program.
This comes as a great relief to the residents of the four selected Counties who will now access free medical services in public health facilities once they register. This is in line with the President’s big four agenda which highlights the need to, among others, provide free healthcare services to the citizens. He therefore urged all the stakeholders to rise to the occasion by supporting this noble initiative.
Also in attendance was Governor Professor Anyang’ Nyong’o who reiterated that his administration was committed to providing free healthcare services to the Kisumu residents as well as empowering the Health workers to facilitate effective service delivery.
The President had earlier presided over the ground breaking ceremony of the construction of .Ahero Junction interchange that will go a long way in enhancing transport in the region. He later proceeded to Victory SDA Church where he issued cheques to youth, men and women entrepreneurs in Kisumu. He wound up his one day tour of the region by commissioning the recently completed Kakamega- Kisumu highway.
His Excellency President Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta.
Her Excellency the First Lady, Mama Margaret Kenyatta,
His Excellency the Deputy President of the Republic of South Africa, Mr. David Mabuza,
The Right Honourable Dr. Hon Raila Amolo Odinga,
Mama Ida Odinga,
The Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr. Tedros Adhanom
The Cabinet Secretary State Department of Health and your colleagues,
Chairman, Council of Governors, Josephat Nanok,
Excellency Ambassadors and Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Development Partners present,
Members of Parliament and the County Assemblies,
All Protocols observed.
Mr. President this is your day. Let me therefore begin by welcoming you and your guests to
this great county of Kisumu, particularly to the City of Kisumu as you launch the Universal
Health Coverage (UHC), a key pillar in the BIG FOUR AGENDA. Your Excellency, on behalf of the people of Kisumu, and on my own behalf, we deeply appreciate the fact that Kisumu County is one of the four counties where this initiative is being piloted.
We cannot take it for granted that the launch today allows us to be part of an unfolding history in which we are present at the dawn as hosts. Thank you Mr. President for this singular honour.
Mr. President, Universal Health Coverage aims to attain equitable, affordable, accessible and quality healthcare for all. I do believe that access to accessible, affordable and quality healthcare can only be fully realized through the full implementation of UHC. This journey has been long and tortuous Mr. President, quite often making two steps forward and reversing with one step backwards. But now I can see the resolve, I can feel the energy and I can smell the victory that we are bound to achieve because we are working together on this enterprise.
In Kisumu County, we are still disturbed by the high prevalence rates of both Malaria and HIV, high maternal mortality rates and increasing cases of cancer. However, we are making good progress in addressing these and other challenges through deliberate policies at the County level to enhance health financing, legislative and policy frameworks as well as partnerships. We have dedicated 30% of our total budget to health and recruited 2,280 Community Health Workers in 193 active community units whom we pay stipend. We will highly appreciate the assistance of the national government to establish the Cancer Centre at Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital (JOOTRH).
Going forward Mr. President, Kisumu County is hopeful that we will maintain constructive dialogue with the national government on implementation of UHC, finalizing implementation guidelines and linking those guidelines to our County strategies for the health sector, complete with a Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) system. This environment of dialogue will also make it possible for counties to deliberate with national government on some of the sticking issues in healthcare delivery such as training of health personnel and resource allocation criteria.
Our potential for success is further energised by the relaxed political atmosphere that you and your brother Raila Amolo Odinga have breathed into this nation through the Building Bridges Initiative. Let not the two of you relent in chasing the corrupt elements in this nation wherever
they may be found. Leave no stone unturned as the Assets Recovery Agency seeks to return ill-gotten wealth back to the public treasury.
Mr President we need these recovered funds and assets to finance our health care system, build our Vocational Training Centres and take care of our public servants in retirement.
In this region, Mr President, we have had gallant men and women, brave Kenyans, who have always stood for what is right and just for all Kenyans. Their aspirations may not have been realised in their life time. But I stand here with pride and confidence that I am serving Kisumu as a Governor at a time when your Presidency is more than ready to give the common Kenyan an opportunity to live in a prosperous and democratic Kenya; a Kenya where periodic circles of elections will no longer herald predictable conflicts and misery for the common man.
Mr. President the secret of development lies in good and democratic governance, institutionalized rule of law, unassailable respect for human rights and the Universal acceptance of the equality of human kind. You and the Prime Minister have recently led by example in supporting the two thirds Gender Bill. This Bill is not just important in eliminating gender based discrimination in political representation; it is vital in establishing a culture and a national ethos of universal equality among men and women.
I have no doubt in my mind that our women play an exceptional role in bringing us up as children and in providing livelihoods in most peasant families. If we are to fully liberate our women, we must invest in modernizing our Agriculture through improved mechanization, irrigation, improved seeds, and good farm gate prices for our farmers, while supporting value addition and innovation in the sector
Mr. President, I therefore hope that it will no longer be treated as a rumour that your government has finally decided to implement the KORU-SOIN multipurpose dam. This project will be a game changer in the political economy of this region. Agricultural productivity will go up ten-fold in the Nyando Basin through improved, expanded and reliable irrigation. Flooding in this river basin will finally be tamed, stabilizing family settlements and eliminating water borne diseases, among other things.
As far as the sugar industry is concerned let me assure you that those of us in the committee you appointed chaired by Governor Oparanya, working together with CS Mwangi Kiunjuri, will do our best to deliver to you a report that will help solve all outstanding problems once your government acts on the recommendations.
Finally, Mr President, Kisumu and the Lake Region Economic Bloc (LREB) looks forward to the SGR reaching here by January 2021. We are working hard to revitalize Maritime transport on the Lake and we are well aware that we will achieve even more in this area in partnership with the national government and the private sector. The SGR, Maritime transport and the road network you have launched today will link the region fully with the rest of Kenya and East Africa.
Why, Mr President, am I making this plea on the SGR?
We make this plea because, Mr. President and Rt. Hon Raila Amolo Odinga, Kisumu has a date with Destiny in November 2021 when about 10,000 people from Africa and the rest of the world will assemble here for the 9th Africities Summit. This is the premier event of Cities and Local Governments in Africa organized every three years by the United Cities and Local Governments in Africa (UCLGA) and the 8th edition of the Summit was held only last month in Marrakech, Morocco. I would like to thank you and your government for having made this possible by leading the bid by Kenya and Kisumu as host country and host city respectively. Governor Josephat Nanok and the Council of Governors, C.S. Eugene Wamalwa and the State Department of Devolution together with the Principal Secretary Charles Hinga in the State Department of Housing and Urban Affairs all went the extra mile to hold our hands on this adventurous journey. To them I extend my gratitude.
I would be completely out of order were I to end my welcome remarks without paying special tribute to three people: The Cabinet Secretary in charge of Health, Ms Cecily Kariuki, the Administrative Secretary in the same department my brother Dr. Rashid Amana and my Chairman Dr. Kuti, the Governor of Isiolo who I deputize in the Health Committee in the Council of Governors. On behalf of all other members of that Committee we would all like to appreciate the productive working relations we have had, culminating to this day – a day like no other!
Mr. President, please continue the valiant struggle to rid Kenya of the enemies of good governance and development. By their very nature, human beings don’t easily obey laws and rules. In fact God has always had problems with us since the day of Adam and Eve. Even Moses had a very hard time negotiating with God how many laws the Israelites would accept from God.
Every time Moses climbed the mountain to go and receive the laws he would come back with 72 which the people rejected as too many. He then went back and negotiated with God coming back with 50. The Israelites pleaded with him to reduce them and let God make them a little bit simpler to obey. Finally he went up and came back with the good news.
The good news was that he had managed to convince God to.make them only 10: one line each, simple, easy to understand and not reducible any more. The people applauded.
The bad news, however, Moses sadly announced with his head bowed down, was that ADULTERY WAS STILL PART OF THE LAW, the breakage of which would invite utter damnation.
Like I said at the beginning, this is your day Mr. President and talking beyond this point would be committing a cardinal crime even under the reduced laws numbering only ten.
May I wish you all a happy stay in Kisumu City and the County as we reflect together on the future of healthcare delivery system in our country.
As for me and the people of Kisumu County, we have seen the future and it works!
Thank you and may God bless Kenya.
Kisumu Governor, Professor Peter Anyang’ Nyong’o this morning received H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta, Rt, Honourable, Raila Amolo Odinga, Deputy President, William Ruto and a host of dignitaries at the Kisumu International Airport, ahead of the launch of the national Universal Health Coverage set to take place at the Maboleo Show ground.
The President is also to commission other development projects in the area which include: The Ahero bypass, Maboleo bypass, and Ken Obura Secondary School in Migosi.
By: Emily Mikwa
The County Commissioner Madam Pauline Dola,
The Various Heads of the Government Security Departments,
Elected Leaders both from the national and County Governments,
The Religious Leaders Present,
County Government Officers,
Members of the Fourth Estate,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Today we celebrate the second Jamhuri day since we took office last year in September. This is the day that defined us as a sovereign nation 55 years ago! On this day, we forget all our differences, race, creed, ethnic composition and bind ourselves to our maker and reverence to our flag – the symbol of our oneness.
This freedom that we celebrate today, courtesy of the blood of the gallant sons and daughters of yore, must be jealously guarded to be bequeathed to the future of this nation.
The pursuit of freedom must be seen in our success at ensuring food security and nutrition for our children, attainment of free health coverage, accessible quality water, sanitation and safer environment; better governance that start from our doorsteps. This is when we shall know we are improving our lives because of the freedom we fought for. The freedom that will have truly freed our souls and made us proud to be Kenyans living in a free and democratic society.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
How do we pull together so that we all walk the same direction and to the same destination so that we can achieve these noble goals together? We must build an inclusive society,a society that respects the contribution of all and does not tolerate any form of discrimination, based on sex, religion, race, region, ethnicity or colour.
This is why my government has worked on measures to bring parity and equity amongst our people coming from different communities and believing in diverse religions. In our current budget, for example, we have gone a long way to give better opportunities for all attending by expanding training of ECD teachers and equipping the schools betters.
We have also made allocation for the Kisumu Enterprise Fund. This fund seeks to transform our small business people to start-up industries by giving them access to affordable funding that hitherto would not be available in the mainstream lending institutions.
Likewise, we are now ready to implement the Kisumu Roads Maintenance Teams that I proposed in my Manifesto so as to provide jobs for many young people. These Teams will make our roads motorable at all times, thereby promoting trade and commerce in our economy.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
All this would not have been possible if the County Assembly had not done its work of thoroughly scrutinizing bills and ensuring sound decisions as a basis for good governance. My gratitude goes therefore to the Assembly and its leadership.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
People from far and wide have noticed the progress we have made in transforming our County.
This achievement would not have been possible without the participation of all the actors across the spectrum: the National Government, the people of the great County of Kisumu and our development partners.
It is our responsibility as leaders to cultivate a society that appreciates all stakeholders in our development process. We have realised that working together with the National Government for example, we can synergize and achieve a lot.
In this regard, let me take this early opportunity to thank President Uhuru Kenyatta and Prime Minister Raila Amolo Odinga for bringing calmness to the otherwise turbulent waters of our politics through the Building Bridges Initiative. We are now able to fight corruption, mismanagement of resources, and bad governance without allowing culprits to hide behind the cloak of tribalism for protection.
If we continue to focus on improving the productivity of our economy by eliminating the wastage corruption we shall achieve a lot in terms of development in a very short time.
We must therefore go out of our way to focus on capacity building, skills development, and entrepreneurship particularly among our youth. With access to appropriate technology, our youth can design mobile applications, excel in the performing arts as well as in sports. We must harness this boundless human capital. That is why my Government has focussed on creating incubation and innovation centres over time across all our Wards that will be equipped with the requisite equipment and tools to make our youth what they must be – capital to our nation.
The Universal Health Coverage which will be launched by HE. The President of the Republic of Kenya, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta is very important in creating a productive work force. Our gratitude to the president is profound for having chosen Kisumu as one of the piloting Counties alongside Isiolo, Machakos and Nyeri. UHC will help us to drastically improve our health statistics in a very short time.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
We have just come back from the inaugural Sustainable Blue Economy Conference held in Nairobi between 26th – 28th November 2018. This conference that brought together over 18,000 participants from 184 Countries, was called to discuss sustainable ways of harnessing the potential of our oceans, seas, lakes and rivers to improve the lives of all of us.
The water towers are dying; the rivers that have been our irrigation enablers are drying up, raw industrial waste flow freely into our lakes, turning our beautiful blue water surfaces into habitats of menaces like hyacinth. We cannot sit by as this blue economy we have survived on for decades gets destroyed by our own foolish industrial and farming activities.
We are all called to action to uphold the virtues of our freedom by making the right choices in environmental management. Simple choices like 145,000 tree seedlings that we planted across the County in the last financial year can go a long way to improve the environment thereby safeguarding our Blue Economy.
Simple declarations like the one I am making today that henceforth, there shall be no washing of cars in the lake or any rivers within the County will obviously help to safeguard our Blue Economy. And that, believe you me, is an Executive Order.
We shall partner with the National Government agencies like NEMA to rid our waters of the unceasing effluents choking our water bodies to extinction.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The kind and warm welcoming spirit of the people of Kisumu is our strength that we bring to the national and world stage. The time to exemplify this is now as we roll out the red carpet to welcome delegates for the Africities Conference to our lovely city in November 2021.
This conference that is expected to bring about 10,000 delegates from across Africa and the world will substantially revolutionise the face of this county. We must put our best foot forward to reap all those benefits that it portends including the approximate two billion shillings direct injection expected into our economy.
Finally, ladies and gentlemen, within the next 2 years, we shall improve on this memorable sports Ground so that it can truly represent the memory of our freedom fighters, people like – MzeeJomo Kenyatta, JaramogiOgingaOdinga – Ogwal bade chieko, Achien’gOneko – Nyakech and many others. Since history is always dynamic, this ground will also be home to the heroes of the Second Liberation and those who have passed on in more recently while promoting the freedoms that are guaranteed in our current constitution.
A LUTA CONTINUA
Thank you and God bless you