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Nyeri farmers get new tea variety

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By IRENE MUGO
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More than 35,000 small scale tea farmers in Nyeri will benefit from a Sh1 million project by the county government meant to spur tea production.

On Wednesday, Governor Mutahi Kahiga launched the distribution of 50,000 tea clones to be given to farmers in all the five factories affiliated to the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA).

Each factory will receive 10,000 seedlings.

The clone, TRFK 300, sourced from Kuresoi, is said to be tolerant to drought and pests and has higher yields compared to the conventional clones that farmers are currently relying on.

“The seedling we are distributing now will ensure farmers have increased their production by at least one kilo which is above the old clone from which they could not get a kilo-and-a-half from a bush,” Governor Kahiga said.

The cloned variety is expected to give farmers three kilos per bush and they are expected to start benefitting from it in the next three years.

According to the acting Region Two manager Anthony Muriithi, of the 56 million tea bushes in the county, there is a 1.4 million gap for farmers whose plantations have dried due to climatic conditions and diseases.

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“Farmers are losing a lot and not managing to generate a good income for themselves with the old clones hence the need to replace them,” he said.

Tea production has increased by 8.6 percent in the past eight months from 744 million kilos to 808 million kilos countrywide.

In Region Two, which covers factories in Nyeri and Murang’a north, production has increased by 15 percent from 91 million kilos to 105 million kilos in the last eight months.



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Three ‘police officers’ charged with violent robbery : The Standard

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Rift ValleyThey each will alternatively pay Sh300,000 as cash bail.

Three police impostors have been charged with violent robbery before a Nakuru Court.
 
Daniel Muthike, James Njuguna and Henry Kiarie appeared before Senior Resident Magistrate Yvonne Khatambi and denied robbery, preparation to commit a felony, possession of government stores and making documents without authority.
 
The charges stated that the trio robbed James Kamau of Sh393,800 and threatened to use actual violence against him if he didn’t cooperate.
 
The robbery occurred on May 28, 2019, at Kabazi trading centre in Subukia Sub County within Nakuru County.
 
The three were arrested on May 29, 2020 at Chavakali trading centre in Vihiga County as they allegedly attempted to commit a felony. 
 
They were transferred to Subukia Police Station in Nakuru county where they were booked.
 
The court documents states that they were found in possession of a pair of handcuffs, fake certificate of appointment, a pocket phone and a metal key, indicating that they wanted to commit felony.
 
“The accused persons had a pair of handcuffs, a fake certificate and a pocket phone,”  reads the charge sheet.
 
Muthike on his part faced two counts. He allegedly had in possession a suspected stolen government store namely a pair of handcuffs of National Police Service at Chavakali.
 
He is also accused of making a letter without authority and with intent to deceive, purporting it a genuine letter issued by the Nursing Council of Kenya.
 
Njuguna faced charges of making a a fake certificate of appointment on May 29, 2020, at Chavakali, purporting it a genuine certificate issued by the National Police Service.
 
He was also charged with making a practice license number without authority, purporting it to be a license issued by the Nursing Council of Kenya.
 
Khatambi released the accused on Sh500,000 bond each, with a surety of similar amount.
 
They each will alternatively pay Sh300,000 as cash bail.
 
The case will be mentioned on June 25.

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Kenya: Nyeri Governor Mutahi Kahiga Rejects COVID-19 Bill

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Nyeri Governor Mutahi Kahiga has declined to assent the County Covid-19 and Highly Infectious Diseases Response Bill, 2020.

The bill seeks to create a committee to contain Covid-19 and other infectious illnesses.

The governor recommended that the bill be deferred since it did not consider fundamental constitutional and administrative principles.

LEGISLATIVE INSTRUMENTS

In a memo to the county assembly, Mr Kahiga noted that the bill had not considered other legislative measures already in place.

“The composition of the committee under the bill is non exhaustive and fails to consider other legislative instruments that allocate power to create committees like the county government Act,” read the memo.

The Covid-19 bill sought to create a committee whose mandate is to deal with coronavirus and any other infectious disease.

The committee, which would be appointed by the sitting governor, is to be chaired by the county Health executive.

The committee is expected to have 10 members including the Health department director, a member of the professional umbrella body in the county, a one each from the private sector, informal sector, neighborhood association, civil society and NGO’s and an association from urban areas.

CREATE PARTNERSHIPS

Other members were to include accounting officers from finance and health and a county commissioner’s nominee.

The committee members were to be tasked with formulating and adopting guidelines for evaluation and accreditation of Personal Protective Equipment as well as create partnerships with private sector to provide subsidised protective.