The county government of Kisumu has launched investigations after claims that fish from Lake Victoria are harmful to humans as they cause infertility.
Speaking during the Farmers Field Day at Maseno Agriculture Training College, the CEC for Agriculture, Livestock, and Fisheries in Kisumu county Henry Phillip Obade said that those claims were being taken seriously by the county government and they had launched investigations to ascertain the truth about the issue.
He said that those claims were propaganda invented by selfish individuals who wanted to discredit fish from the lake, saying that once the report is out they would make it public for everyone to know.
Obade said that as a county government they had started restocking fish in various fishponds starting with 100 fishponds so that people can eat fish from their own farms.
Obade condemned the ongoing illegal fishing at Lake Victoria that has led to lack of sufficient fish from the lake, thus forcing them to import fish from China.
“There are people using illegal fishing gears that harvest all fish including the small fingerlings and the eggs, we are going to prosecute all that shall be found guilty,” he said.
He asked farmers to go back to their farms and embrace farming as a way of reducing overdependence on other counties for food.
“As a county, we produce only 20,000 litres of milk per day yet we consume 80,000 litres of milk in a day, meaning the deficit comes from elsewhere,” he said.
Obade added that they were planning to make the institution an excellent exhibition centre on irrigation so that there is sustained food availability throughout the year as a means of ensuring food security in the county.
He added that they were constructing a transport shed at the Kisumu International Airport so as to open a gateway for a ready market overseas for the products that will be produced, as they commercialize farming in the region.
He asked the residents to form groups in order get loans from different ministries including agriculture and trade so that they can improve agriculture in the county
Obade further said that the county had bought six tractors that are currently operational and they are planning to add 6 more so as to make it easy and affordable to farmers as it would enable them to prepare their farming land in good time and prevent delays.
The CEC said that the institute would be made an institution of modeling in livestock so as to enable upgrading of animals through artificial insemination. The animals that would be sired in that institute would be distributed in all areas and any farmer would buy them, this will improve the type of animals in the area be a good producer of both milk and beef.
He further added that as a county they were planning to set up an agricultural development technological training center that would have agriculturally oriented activities on research and technology.
On the matter of under staffing at the institution, the CEC said that they had re-advertised jobs and soon after short listing them they would send more staff to the institution as the institution had only 3 employed staffs and a few volunteers.
The MCA of Maseno north ward Samuel Otieno Bogor who is also a member of the agricultural committee in the county assembly of Kisumu asked Obade that as a ministry they come up with a policy paper that would ensure smooth funding of the institution so as to rehabilitate it.
Bogor said the procurement office had been asked to look for a tender of 5 million passed in the 2015-2016 financial year to construct new buildings in the institution but until now nothing had happened.
The chairman of the board of the institution Dennis Ogada asked the CEC to invest in irrigation by finding a way that would use the waters in lake Victoria for irrigation so as to make food sustainable in the county .