Kajiado County is set to get 200 household dams to boost the county's food security preparedness.
The dams will be constructed by the National Irrigation Board (Nib) as part of the body's household focused irrigation scheme to spur food production for both subsistence and commercial use. The government parastatal has already started construction of some of the dams in farms in Kajiado Central and Kajiado South sub-counties.
Governor Joseph ole Lenku said the dams will be extended to other sub counties to ensure there is enough conserved water resources to aid livestock owners plant hay for their animals in their own farms. “We are targeting 400 dams. As we encourage the beneficiaries to plant food crops as an alternative source of food security, we shall also use the water to grow hay and conserve it for the dry spell,” said Governor Lenku who has placed livestock, food security as one of his key flagship projects in the next five years.
The county is expected to experience a dry spell later in the year, despite being flooded recently.
Kajiado Agriculture and Livestock Executive Moses ole Narok said the dams with a capacity of 3,000 cubic metres are in the first phase.
“The construction is going on. We are doing this in phases. We expect to cover more land owners So that the benefits of the irrigation can cascade to other neighbouring farms,” said Mr Narok.
Mr Narok stated that the small irrigation outlets form part of the bigger strategy adopted by the county government to enable farmers grow hay and other livestock feed at household level.
The county has already set aside 10,000 hectares of land to produce and conserve hay and aims at promoting the same practice among individual farmers.
“If we address availability of livestock feed, we shall have addressed 70 per cent of Kajiado’s food insecurity and poverty levels,” said Mr Narok.