Government to inject sh 2.3B to fight army worms

Infested plants in Kwale county /LAWRENCE SITA

Nairobi,KENYA:Government has settled on  a sh  2.3 billion long term strategy in bid to fight army worms which have ravaged agricultural products especially maize leading to a loss of six million bags in the last harvesting season.

In a media briefing in Nairobi during a launch of a 50 million program of partnership between the government and United Nations Food Agricultural Organisation , in bid to fight army warm menace in the country, agriculture cabinet secretary Willy Bett and FAO representative Gabriel Lukerema said that the offer has been used in procuring army warm surveillance kits which will be used in 80 villages in the counties of North Rift and Western.

Lukerema urged government and development partners to cooperate to fight this menace that has rendered many farmers across the country hopeless.

“Of course farmers are desperate for solutions ,I think the government and other development partners ,really need to take steps ,to make sure that you bring practical solutions .what we have done today FAO has signed ,a technical cooperation of program with the government of Kenya ,worth 50 million KSH and part of this money we have procured army warm surveillance kits “Lukerema said

Bett said that in the last season the country lost a approximately six to seven million bags occasioned by army warms which hit especially the North rift and western counties including Trans Nzoia , Uasin Gishu Bungoma and Kakamega .

“We will be having long term warm control strategy ,which will cost 2.3 billion shillings ,in the entire Noth Rift ,the estimates we are talking about now is 6 to 7 million bags which have been lost in TransNzoia we are talking about 1 million bags.”

He said that in the last season the government used 300 million shillings as a mitigating factor in fighting the menace.

He reiterated the need of coming up with strategies of curbing the spread of army worms which has devastating effects of food security in the country.

He expressed fears that the current rainfall being experienced in the country during this harvesting season might lead to drop of food being harvested by 20 percent.