Kitui county government invests in modern farming technology

The county government has bought tractors that will be leased to farmers at a subsidised fee.

Speaking during their launch, Governor Charity Ngilu asked farmers to form committees to identify individuals who would be given priority during ploughing and planting.

“While wealthy farmers can get tractor services from private owners, there is need to help the poor achieve food security,” said Mrs Ngilu.

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As part of the mechanisation programme, farmers in the 40 wards will each pay Sh1,000 to plough one acre. Private tractor owners charge Sh2,000.

Ngilu said her administration bought an additional 23 tractors for a total of 40. She added that each sub-county would be allocated two tractors for ploughing ahead of the April-May rains.

The governor said the initiative was intended to break farmers' dependence on the traditional ox-drawn ploughs, adding that water and food security was at the top of her development priorities.

“In our plan, we will continue to support farmers by supplying crop seeds and pesticides. We are spearheading the ndengu (green gram) revolution that is in its third season now. In the last season, we got a yield of over 49 million kilograms,” said Ngilu.

The governor added that in October last year, her administration initiated the Myanda irrigation programme that encouraged residents to use all available riverine land to grow tomatoes, onions, capsicums, green peppers, cucumbers and water melons.

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Ngilu also said her administration had distributed 1,600 water tanks to public institutions to aid in water harvesting.

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Governor Charity Ngilundengufarmers