Ruto promises farmers cheap loans, better prices

Deputy President William Ruto addressed residents of Ol Kalau in Nyandarua County on May 19, 2022. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

Deputy President William Ruto yesterday took his presidential campaigns to Nakuru and Nyandarua counties where he drummed up support for his bottom-up economic model.

Speaking during an economic forum in Nakuru, Dr Ruto took note of concerns raised by residents on skewed government appointments. 

“Nakuru is often lost in between Mt Kenya and Rift Valley regions when it comes to distribution of Cabinet slots. I shall appoint one Cabinet Secretary from Nakuru in my government,” said Ruto.

The DP cited agriculture and manufacturing as some of the key sectors that his government would prioritise for the county which is the second largest contributor to the economy.

Coffee farmers in the county led by Geoffrey Muhia said their main challenges are lack of quality seedlings, high cost of inputs and an unfriendly market for their produce. 

“We are getting poor quality seedlings and this affects production. It has become very expensive to take care of the crops,” said Mr Muhia. 

The DP promised to cap the price of fertiliser at Sh2,500 per 50kg bag and guaranteed minimum returns to ensure farmers know the price before they sell their produce. 

He pledged that his government would support local farmers co-operatives in establishing processing plants.

“For a start, we shall set the minimum price for a litre of milk at Sh45. We shall subsidise Artificial Insemination services and provide milk coolers. This will grow the lucrative dairy sector,” said Ruto.

Under his promise of Sh50 billion credit facility for small and micro-enterprises, the DP said traders would be charged low-interest rates that to allow for expansion of their businesses.

The DP promised to help revive the timber industry following a four-year moratorium that saw the economy of timber towns in the county take a beating.

Ruto said that his administration would lead in planting of a million trees on forest lands.