A section of political leaders in the North Rift region has threatened to oppose the government’s proposal to allocate Ksh10 billion to facilitate the roll-out of the third phase of the National Sanitation Programme popularly known as Kazi Mtaani.
President Uhuru Kenyatta, during the Mashujaa Day celebrations, had directed the National Treasury to set aside the funds for the program that targets over 200,000 youths across the country.
This was part of the thirteen strategic interventions that the head of state announced and was meant to cover agriculture, health, education, drought response, policy, infrastructure, financial inclusion, energy, and environmental conservation.
But according to the North Rift politicians led by Keiyo South Member of Parliament Daniel Rono, Uhuru failed to consider farmers from the region considered the country’s food basket.
“The other day our president announced that he will set aside some money for tea, coffee, and livestock, where is money for maize? We don’t eat coffee, tea, and livestock now. The priority should be maize,” noted the MP.
In the strategic interventions, Uhuru directed Ksh1 billion to be allocated in support of fertilizer subsidy for Tea Farmers, Ksh1.5 Billion in aid of the sugar sector, which will be appropriated towards factories maintenance and payment of farmer’s arrears, and KSh. 1 Billion to the Ministry of Agriculture to be appropriated towards completion of the ongoing targeted interventions in the Coffee Sub-Sector among others.
The MP, however, said with North Rift farmers now harvesting their maize, the government should have allocated sufficient funds to facilitate the purchase of the produce and ensure there is sufficient food in the national reserves.
“We need over 10 billion for maize purchase as NCPB has no food now. We have people crying of hunger yet farmers here have more than enough,” added the legislator.
Rono who is a key ally of Deputy President William Ruto now says “We will rally ourselves in parliament, we will not pass that Kazi Mtaani money until the money for maize purchase is allocated.”