Home National News Nobody will starve to death, CS Penina Malonza assures hungry Kitui Residents

Nobody will starve to death, CS Penina Malonza assures hungry Kitui Residents

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EAC, ASALs and Regional Development cabinet secretary Hon Penina Malonza assured Mwingi North residents of the government’s commitment to eradicating hunger and water scarcity.

During her address on Friday, 1st March 2024, while distributing relief food to over 25,000 locals across Ngomeni, Tseikuru, Kyuso, Tharaka, and Mumoni wards, she announced plans to construct a Ksh 425 billion Grand Falls Dam, a reliable water source for domestic, agricultural, and industrial use, helping to alleviate water scarcity issues in the area throughout the year.

This High Grand Falls Multi-purpose Dam is the largest dam in Africa. It stretches from the Tana River County up to the Kitui and Tharaka Nithi Counties and will support irrigation projects, allowing farmers to cultivate crops year-round and potentially increasing agricultural productivity,” she added.

The project aims to address water scarcity by providing over 56,000 million cubic meters of water, irrigating 400,000 hectares, and generating up to 1000 megawatts of hydropower.

She also encouraged Kitui farmers to diversify their crops is a positive step towards resilience in challenging climates. Naming Dragon fruit, castor, cotton, and sunflower as suitable choices for arid and semi-arid conditions, offering opportunities for sustainable agriculture and economic growth.

“for example, dragon fruit farming has great potential in the country since it adapts well to the local climate with high temperatures and it consumes little water. Local and global market trends show an ever-increasing demand for new, healthy exotic fruits,” she said .

The prices, she noted currently the dragon fruit is the most expensive fruit in the country with the price going for between Ksh800 and Ksh2,000 a kilogramme depending on the purchasing location.

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