Sunday, 22 January 2012

Some light at the Kenyan Agricultural tunnel?

Finally the goverment has decided to give agriculture a greater say through the proposition of a new Agricultural bill, to replace Chapter 318-Agricultural Act, which has been in operation since 1st July,1995 with an exception of  the former Northern Province where its effectiveness commenced on 8th, June 1963. the Act reads in the Introduction part thus: "An Act of Parliament to promote and maintain a stable agriculture, to provide for the conservation of the soil and its fertility and to stimulate the development of agricultural land in accordance with the accepted practices of good land management and good husbandry". Find a copy of the Act here .
Its 55 year or so span has in to a greater percentage contributed to the weakening of the  backbone of Kenya's economy as it contributes to 24% of the GDP and employs 80% of the population. As per last years Cabinet  meeting resolution, five Bills were meant to replace the 131 or so bills during the meeting scheduled for February.As per the document proposal, the Agriculture, Livestock Development and Fisheries ministry could be better merged in to one ministry. Similar case relate to Regional Development, Lands, Environment, Water and Irrigation, Forestry and Wildlife and Co-operative Development) being part of the merged “Ministry of Agric Parastatals constituting  Fisheries Regulatory Authority, Crops Regulatory Authority, and Livestock and Livestock Products Development Authority  whose mandate is to develop and regulate all trade in animals and animal products.
 Agricultural Sector Finance Board taking over the activities of Agricultural Finance Corporation   and  Agricultural Marketing Board replacing the  National Cereals and Produce Board .Among the  bill drafters include:
  •  Prof Githu Muigai (now Attorney General)
  • Prof Shellemiah Keya, a professor of Agricultural Economics and once a time the  vice chancellor of Moi University
  •  Mr Seno Nyakenyanya, the PS, Ministry of Cooperative Development.                                              


The New four Bills are under the main umbrella  Agriculture 2011 are:
  •  National Agriculture Research Services (NARS) 2011
  •  Livestock 2011
  •  Fisheries 2011
  •  Crop Bill 2011 


The February month is just around the corner. Lets wait and see what turn the Agriculture Act takes!