7,000 Garissa farmers ask for transport

By: STEPHEN ASTARIKO

Farmers in Garissa county have urged the government to provide them with vehicles to transport their produce to the town.

The 7,000 farmers from 174 farms said their crops are rotting away in the fields due to the heavy rains. They also want the government to repair roads.

“The other day we appealed to the national government to repair access roads to farms so that we can harvest our farm produce,” farmer Habida Noor said.

“But until now, nothing has been forthcoming.” She spoke to the press from her Nasib farm yesterday.

“When we ask the county government for assistance they refer us to the national government. We are counting losses amount to millions of shillings,” Noor said.

She urged the government to rescue them before it gets too late.

“These farms are our only source of livelihood because most of us don’t keep livestock. Our watermelons, pawpaws and vegetables have all been destroyed by floodwaters,” Noor said.

She said the more than 2,000 families displaced by floods in Garissa subcounty have been assisted by the government and NGOs.

Noor asked why farmers are not getting any assistance like the displaced people, yet they have similar problems.

Farmers representative Hassan Mohamed blamed the Kenya Electricity Generating Company for releasing huge volumes of water from their Seven Forks reservoirs without warning them.

He said this has led to huge losses in their farms.

Mohamed said KenGen has made it a habit of releasing water without informing them.

He said the only lasting solution is to build a canal where the water will be directed.