AGRICULTURE CAN TRANSFORM AFRICA, SAYS KENYATTA

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta says his government has put in place the necessary regulatory and policy frameworks to harness the potential of agriculture to transform the country.

The government is also fixing regulations and processes which deny farmers the ability to benefit from value-addition of their products, citing the example of coffee, where regulations and processes mean that farmers who grows the product do not even know what they will get and just “sit back and wait”, which is a huge dis-incentive.

President Kenyatta, speakign in a panel discussion at the World Economic Forum (WEF) on Africa being held in the Rwandan capital, Kigali, said the Kenyan government was working on value addition in upgrading infrastructure to enable farmers access the market, credit, and working on policies to reduce risks associated with agriculture.

Other areas the government was working on included frameworks which would enable women to own land to enable them to become major stakeholders in the country’s agricultural sector, he told the discussion, whose other panellists included Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, Tanzanian Vice-President Samia Suluhu, African Development Bank (AfDB) President Akinwumi Adesina and African Union (AU) Deputy Chairman Erastus Mwencha.

The leaders discussed the progress and priorities in promoting agriculture as a growth sector in food security, job creation and reliable incomes to rural populations.

“We in Kenya are ensuring better management of diminishing water resources to avail enough water for irrigation as we shift from rain-fed agriculture,” Kenyatta said.

Under the country’s medium-term development strategy, Vision 2030, Kenyan youth were being encouraged to venture into farming as a career to earn income as well as grow the country’s economy. Kenyatta added that the involvement of youth in agriculture gave the sector the necessary impetus to achieve the development blueprint

Source: Nam News Network