Kenya: President Ruto Says Efforts to Reclaim Water Towers to Proceed Unhindered

Nairobi — The Government is committed to reclaiming and conserving all water catchment areas in the country, President William Ruto has said.

President Ruto said efforts were being made to reclaim, rehabilitate and conserve all forests, water towers, rivers, and other degraded landscapes within the country.

Speaking during the launch of the 7th edition of the annual Kaptagat forest ecosystem tree growing event held at Kessup forest station in Elgeyo Marakwet County, the President said the move was irreversible.

The President also attended a thanksgiving ceremony for Treasury PS Chris Kiptoo at St Alphonsus Mutei secondary school.

“Over the next 10 years, we shall grow 15 billion trees and restore 10.6 million hectares of degraded forests and rangelands.

He said in keeping with the constitutional imperative, this programme shall fully involve the public from the grassroots, all the way to the Cabinet.

” I appeal to every Kenyan to plant at least 30 trees each year, in order to properly participate in this programme as mandated by the Constitution and contribute to our collective climate action targets,” said President Ruto.

He expressed concern that extreme weather has become more common, as a result of climate change caused by human activity.

“In our country and region, drought has increased in frequency, intensity and duration.”

Mitigating drought

The President said over two million livestock died, and many more wild fauna perished due to lack of water and pasture, inflicting unbearable losses to many households in our pastoral rangeland communities.

He said food scarcity has driven food prices beyond the reach of many, making emergency relief the mainstay of nutrition security.

On security along the Kerio Valley, President Ruto assured communities in the region that peace will be restored.

“I promised you that I would do whatever it takes to restore peace along the Kerio Valley. We have posted enough security there to decisively deal with the criminal elements operating there,” said President Ruto.

He also said the Government will from this month first pay salaries of people under the cash transfer programme before the rest of civil servants.

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua praised the President for shelving plans by SRC to increase salaries for senior Government officials and leaders.