Farmers suffer losses after aerial spray ‘burn’ crops

A farmer at Ngori Ngori area in Ololulunga Location is counting losses after his food crops, grass and trees were destroyed following an aerial pesticide spray.

The farmer alleged that a large-scale farmer sprayed his farm two weeks ago and the chemical was blown off by wind to the neighbouring farms hence the damage.

Paul Ole Sankei said the large-scale farmer, who runs a firm dubbed S.S Dhilion Limited, had earlier been advised to use a tractor to spray his farm instead of aerial spray to avoid interference with the environment.

We have held several meetings with the farm managers and agreed that farmers should use tractors to spray their farms, but he has continuously ignored us. I am now contemplating filing a case in court if he does not compensate us, he said.

Sankei said his nine acres of rose coco beans valued at Ksh700, 000 and sh2, 000 blue gum trees and grass planted in 10 acres were affected by the chemical sprayed.

I had to move my cows to other areas because when they graze on this grass they diarrhoea a lot, he said adding that his 131 acres of land had been affected by the chemical.

A report by Ololulunga ward line Agricultural Extension Officer Mr. Fred Were confirmed the damage to the crops saying the beans were doing well and were in the flowering stage.

He said 70 per cent of the nine acres had been affected adding that the anticipated yield from the farms was 14 bags per acre where a bag sells at Ksh8, 000.

Area Assistant chief Mr. John Nkukuni said the chemicals were affecting the soil structures and fertility of their farms leading to stunted growth of their crops.

The effect is worse in March and April when the same farmers spray their wheat crop because it causes skin rashes and coughing among children in the neighbouring schools, he said.

Narok County Director of National Environment and Management Authority (NEMA) Mr. Patrick Lekinit said he visited the area to ascertain the situation and his office will take legal action against the culprit.

He said he will ensure that the farmers are compensated and the culprit punished accordingly.

KNA’s efforts to seek a comment from S.S Dhillion Limited were futile as the media was barred from accessing his premises.


By Ann Salaton