An estimated 2.5 million heads of livestock have lost their lives due to the ongoing drought experienced in the country. Livestock principal secretary Harry Kimutai says the government is looking for more markets to export livestock in order to reduce huge losses to the affected areas.
Speaking at the launch of the Dairy Farmers feeding manual held in Mombasa. Principal Sec of Livestock Harry Kimutai said, about 2.5M livestock have succumbed to death in the last four seasons due to lack of water and pasture.
“For the last four season we have had no rains especially in our North -Eastern areas where we have large heads of livestock, because that is where we rely on our livestock production.We estimate to a bout 2.5 livestock that we have lost but the rest are not in the stable condition because their body weight has really emasheted due to lack of water and pasture and also the movement to far places looking for pasture and water,” Harry Kimutai; PS -Livestock.
Mutai says the government has begun off-take programs and is looking for markets for the export of livestock to minimise losses faced by pastoralists.
“So we have animals but their body weight is not good enough to dispose off and if they dispose off they do not fetch the correct value for their animals, so it is really a big challenge,” Harry Kimutai; PS-Livestock
He says the plans are underway for the country to invest in agriculture and livestock production as a lasting solution.
According to PS , the ongoing dairy feeding manual in Mombasa is expected to come out with recommendations that will be used to address challenges facing the affected areas.
“We are worried that if it fails in the fifty round then it is going to be more devastating, so we want actually what we are looking at in terms of how we can produce pastures in places where there is rain. we need to produce more pastures in the places that we are sure there will be rain so that we are able to off -take to pastoralists to feed their animals,” Harry Kimutai; PS -Livestock.
By Juliet Wekesa