DG ERUS LEADS TURKANA IN MARKING WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY, CALLS FOR SUSTAINABLE PRACTICE

DG ERUS LEADS TURKANA IN MARKING WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY, CALLS FOR SUSTAINABLE PRACTICE

Kalobeyei, June 5, 2024 (Public Communication and Media Relations)

Turkana County commemorated World Environment Day 2024, an event in the UN global calendar marked annually on June 5.

The celebrations were held at the Kalobeyei sports complex, Kalobeyei Ward in Turkana West.

Deputy Governor Dr. John Erus led the celebrations and highlighted the critical need for environmental conservation, with a focus on this year’s theme, Land Restoration, Desertification, and Drought Resilience.

In his address, he painted a vivid picture of the potential environmental challenges likely to face Turkana, noting that the county’s economy heavily depends on natural resources susceptible to environmental degradation.

“Turkana stands threatened; the rising temperatures and changing rainfall patterns result in an increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events such as drought, hence increasing our vulnerability,” he said.

Additionally, Dr. Erus elaborated the county’s initiative to combat the triple threat of desertification, land degradation, and drought through an elaborate legislative framework of the County Climate Change Act and policy of 2021.

Noting that the county government had invested up to Ksh 300 million over the last year for climate-smart initiatives in irrigation agriculture, water, and community-based initiatives, the DG asked residents to take personal responsibility for planting trees to safeguard the gains already realised.

“Statistics by the county reveal that we have so far planted 3.5 million trees over the last year in line with the presidential directive targeting to increase Kenya’s forestry cover from the current 12.13% to 30% by 2032,” DG remarked.

The celebration comes at a time when the county has conducted an assessment of all the proposed locally led climate change action in readiness for a joint investment of Ksh 382 million, in which the World Bank, through FLLoCA, puts in Ksh 262 million and the county tops up Ksh 120 million as matching funds.

CECM for Tourism, Culture, Natural Resources, and Climate Change, Audan Leah Lokala, emphasised the need for collaborative approaches in combating the rapid deforestation in Turkana West and the entire county.

The CECM added that she had been served with reports by both county and national government authorities on aerial surveys conducted in Turkana showing the wanton destruction of forests and natural resources, calling for concerted efforts to address the issue.

During the event, the DG led a tree planting session in which more than 100 trees were planted,  an exhibition on technology solutions for green cooking was viewed, and institutions were awarded for conservation efforts.

The event was also addressed by the UNHCR head of the Kakuma Office Sateesh Nanduri, Local area MCAs Eliud Emoni (Kakuma Ward), Julius Edung (Kalobeyei) and Ngimusia Francis (Letea).

The event was also attended by Joseph nyang’a( Deputy county secretary) Peter Eyapan( Chief of Staff),Joseph Ekalale ( Chief officer, Natural resources, Environment, and Climate change.

Phoebe Ekal ( Director Environment) Clement Nadio ( Director Natural resources) George Lodungo( Director Climate change)Jackson Lojore( Director Energy and petroleum) and Peter Emuria( Kakuma Municipality Manager) were present.

SCA Turkana West Christine Nalemaekon, SCA Lokichoggio Echip Obed, DSCA Amos Esilan Turkana West, Ward Admistrators and Village Administrative officers.

National Government team was led by Assistant County Commissioner Kevin Mwangi.

TOBONGU LORE

13TH-14TH AUGUST 2024