Due to the rising cost of fertilizer and other farm inputs, security and disaster management experts have warned of a possible food crisis in the country.
Speaking in Kitale, Trans Nzoia County, Philemon Samoei, a security consultant said many farmers are unable to buy fertilizers and other farm inputs.
“The situation currently is dire, majority of farmers in North Rift region have reduced the number of acres under maize.”
Samoei said there is a direct relationship between food crisis and crime.
“You know reducing the acreage under maize means food prices will shoot to all-time high making it unaffordable. An empty stomach is very dangerous, you can be sure the crime rate will rise,” he added.
He also said if urgent measures are not taken, Kenyans are likely to turn against the government.
“In fact, if this trend continues, Kenyans may not even turn up for the August general elections, the government should therefore act swiftly by setting aside some emergency funds for the fertilizer subsidy program,” he appealed.
Last week, the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights KNCHR, chairperson Roseline Odede said the cost of fertilizer was raised as one of issues raised as a cause of human rights violation in agriculturally rich counties.
Joseph Lamai a farmer in Kwanza said majority of both small and large scale farmers will plant maize for subsistence uses only.
This was echoed by David Sitienei, a maize farmer in Cherangany constituency who asked the Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya to intervene for the sake of country’s food security.
“I normally do nine acres of maize but this year I have prepared only two acres to cater for my family needs. Munya should stop politics and listen to the farmers who feed this country,” Sitienei said.
Currently, a 50kg bag of fertilizer retails between KSh6,000 and Ksh6,500.