News Categories: Agriculture and Cooperative Development

14 Jul
By: Faith Songok 0

OPTIMIZATION OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE TO SUPPORT THE AVOCADO INDUSTRY IN NANDI

On Tuesday, the Department of Agriculture and Cooperative Development held consultative talks with member officials of the Nandi Avocado Farmer Cooperative Society.

The meeting was centered on discussing progress and process other ways of strengthening the capacities of its subcommittees in a bid to fast track and enhance operations of the society.

In attendance was sub-county cooperative officer Mr. Hosea Kiprop. Mr. Hosea underscored the various roles of each subcommittee and the responsibility each share as a means to successful returns of their members’ investment.

Sub-County Cooperative Officer, Mr Hosea Kiprop following through the session.

Areas discussed were on governance, education and training, finance, production and marketing, procurement, and oversight.

It is the role of the office to ensure cooperatives are well guided and that they have access to all the necessary tools they require for increased productivity thus profitability.

Meeting in progress

Avocado is one of the priority value chains the county government is scaling up as a means to introduce its farmers’ produce internationally.  Avocados in Kenya can be sold in the lucrative markets in Europe, the Middle East, and South Africa prior to previous restrictive measures that had seen avocado imports from Kenya restricted from international borders.

The county government of Nandi, therefore, through the department of Agriculture and cooperative development has invested in processes to capacity build the value chain to take advantage of such a profitable venture.

Members following through

It has provided funds and created marketing channels for Avocado produce through partnerships. Such is True Trade Africa who has a Memorandum of Understanding with the County Government of Nandi to support avocado and potato farmers in Nandi, market their products to regional and international markets.

Cooperatives nature of pulling of resources creates a high bargaining power and risk-sharing for its members in an otherwise competitive market environment.

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14 Jul
By: Faith Songok 2

BUILDING CAPACITY FOR EFFECTIVE ADMINISTRATION OF KOCHENG NGEI COOPERATIVE SOCIETY.

The department of Agriculture and Cooperative Development has continued to support farmer value chain cooperatives in their quest to make their farming activities a worthwhile venture to their members and the society in general.

On Monday, Chief Officer Cooperative Development Dr. Benadatte Tiony met with officials of Kocheng ngei farmer cooperative society to discuss on their progress and relook into modalities that will fast track their investment capacity and thus attract high returns to their members.

Kochen ngei officials in consultative talks with Chief Officer Cooperative Development, Dr. Benadatte Tiony.

Kocheng ngei is a poultry investing cooperative society. It is among the common interest self-help groups who qualified for the National Agriculture and Rural Inclusive Project fund. NARIGP is an initiative of the county governments with World Bank to equip farmers in rural areas with necessary tools to aid in increasing the profitability and productivity of their priority value chains as a measure of improving livelihoods in rural settings

Speaking during the meeting, Chief Officer Cooperative Development, Dr. Benadatte Tiony, highlighted on the various areas of support the office will provide to the team on matters governance, bookkeeping, audits, education and trainings, sensitization, marketing, overseeing service delivery, and providing resources.

Chief Officer Co-operative Development, Dr. Benadatte Tiony and Betty Koech, Sub County Co-operative Officer.

She urged the team to take up their role as economy developers seriously and be game-changers of the poultry industry in Nandi and the region at large.

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12 Jul
By: Phoebe Jeruto 0

CALL FOR PROPER LAND USE PRACTICES FOR RESIDENTS OF TINDERET FOLLOWING PREVALENT MUDSLIDES

 

Mudslides has become rampant within the areas of Tinderet Sub-County due to the above normal rainfall currently experienced coupled with poor land use management along the escarpments.

In this regard the Chief Officer Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries- Wilson Lelei together with County Head of Disaster Management- Lorrine Cherono visited Kabiemit Sub-Location in Songhor/ Soba Ward where five (5) farmers had their land adversely affected by mudslide and crops destroyed.

The team assessing the affected area

Mr Lelei advised farmers to venture into planting of fruit trees and cover crops as an alternative source of income. Ms Cherono further encouraged them to plant environmentally friendly vegetation so as to maintain greenery and hold the soil along the slopes.

A section of Land affected by the mudslide

Further to this they joined the Chief Officer for Transport and Infrastructure-Jonah Biwott and other well-wishers who donated maize and clothing for relief support to the people of Taptengele Location who in the recent past have been victims of mudslide.

Chief Officer Jonah Biwott donating clothes

CO Wilson Lelei and Lorrine Cherono donating maize to one the affected residents

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04 Jul
By: Faith Songok 0

USHIRIKA DAY 2020- 4TH JULY COOPERATIVES FOR CLIMATE ACTION.

It is that time of the year again that the world comes together to celebrate the International Day of Cooperatives. It is a day scheduled annually to increase awareness on cooperatives and to highlight their achievements throughout the year.

The theme for this year is COOPERATIVES FOR CLIMATE ACTION.

As the world commemorates this day, we take a look back at how the County Government of Nandi has integrated cooperatives in their inclusive and sustainable approaches into areas of environmental sustainability.

The County, just like other areas globally, has not been exempted from climatic challenges. And through its department of Agriculture and Cooperative Development, it has been keen to involve cooperatives in their models and leadership to address these challenges.

It has also put in place strategies to create enabling climatic conditions that would reduce barriers to cooperative development.

In the recent past, heavy rainfall has caused floods and landslides that created destructions in parts of the County with most affected areas being Chepkario and Mbogo Valley in Tinderet Ward; Chelogong in Tuiyobei and Kapkitany in Songhor Soba ward.

The County Government in liaison with Agricultural Cooperatives rolled out an ambitious plan to reclaim these affected areas and all areas prone to land and mudslides by introducing and promoting the planting of fruit trees and cash crops such as coffee, avocado and macadamia nuts not only to increase food security but to increase land cover and reduce soil erosion.

Certified coffee seedlings distributed at Songhor-Soba ward

In the same effort, the County Government has partnered with Acre Africa, to insure farmers from potential crop damage caused by unfavorable weather conditions.

It provides weather index insurance products for each yielding crop phase. Acre Africa is a licensed insurance intermediary working with local insurers and other stakeholders in the agricultural value chain to provide farmers with transparent, non-exploitative timely payouts after suffering crop loss.

The government has also advanced in solving climate change effects through enabling strategies that will empower the cooperatives to find solutions.

One is the provision of capital. The government has provided special access to capital to enable cooperatives to expand in areas that mitigate or adapt to climate change. The county government has invested in seed granting programs, over 50,000 certified coffee seedlings have been distributed so far from the project, and it is in the process of rearing quality potato and avocado seedlings to be distributed to local farmers.

It has also facilitated the provision of revolving loan funds and inclusion grants through their partnership with World Bank. This partnership has seen cooperatives and self- interest groups’ drawn from wards across the County benefit from funding. The said groups wrote funding proposals that got approved for the financing.

Coffee seedling nursery at Kabunyeria Farmer Cooperative Society to be distributed to farmers.

Through legislation, the government has created a non- discriminatory regulatory environment that facilitates the creation and development of cooperatives.

It is one of the critical transformational agenda of  Governor Stephen Sang government to empower cooperatives to improve livelihoods at grass root levels through access and resource mobilization.

The County Government has also recognized and promoted cooperatives in educational programs, business development programs, and as part of the economy.

It has organized and facilitated Ushirika days to create awareness on cooperatives, partnered with organizations to offer trainings to cooperative members. DigiCow and Digital Green are technology-based organizations with a memorandum of understanding with the county government to provide real-time expert trainings to farmers and farmer groups in Nandi.

It has also facilitated the provision of subsidy programs in crop and dairy sector to cooperatives to manage production costs faced by their members.

Also, the diversity of different sectors in which cooperatives engage means they can work together to address climate change while also advancing sustainable development goals.

Cooperatives could look into a renewable source of energy for their farming activities, for example, the use of natural manure or eco -friendly manure. Hence affects the quality and the healthiness of food produced, which affects the population health.

Agricultural cooperatives could also look into using sustainable management practices to keep ground secure and fertile.

Credit unions to provide investments in natural resource sustainability.

Insurance cooperatives to provide resiliency to their members in the face of extreme weather events

Public transport cooperatives to work to provide sustainable transportation by providing high efficient vehicles to the public and reduce the rate of driving and car ownership. They should look into fuel-efficient cars.

Bodaboda saccos provide low carbon transport

Kapsasur bodaboda sacco

Retail cooperatives provide local goods at affordable prices, minimizing the need for commercial transportation. They work to reduce the environmental impacts of the production of the products at source, reduce waste, generate renewable energy; reduce the impact of their operations, and educate consumer-members and staff.

Cooperatives can also advance their efforts to address climate change by building on the cooperative principles. They should encourage members to set policies on climate change to reduce risk to the business. Identify and report on the threat that climate change poses to cooperative business, use cooperatives as a mechanism to enable members to address climate change.

Establish a capital mechanism that supports strategies to address climate change without compromising cooperative values. Provide training and education on climate change impacts, risks, and plans to reduce emissions. Identify ways in which cooperatives can support members to reduce their impact on climate change. Work with organizations and other businesses to minimize climate risk operations.

Provide decision-makers with information on the effect of climate change on cooperative business and steps to recover. Identify opportunities to build or enhance the resilience of the community to climate change impacts.

Identify and support populations that are particularly vulnerable to the harsh effects of climate change.

The characteristics of cooperatives puts them in a unique position to combat climate change challenges.

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22 May
By: Faith Songok 5

NANDI AVOCADO FARMERS COOPERATIVE SOCIETY

The County Government of Nandi has shown  progressive commitment in supporting farmer groups in cooperative societies.

This in line with HE Governor Sang transformational agenda of supporting farmers economically.

A Cooperative Society is a safe cushion to a farmer in facing any production challenge with minimal risks among it being a profitable space where he enjoys immense benefits from a collective pulling of resources and support.

And with the County Government renewed focus on emerging lucrative value chains, Nandi Avocado Farmers Cooperative Society has since been established with its introductory meeting held on Wednesday graced by the CO Cooperative Development, Dr. Bernadette Tiony at the Cooperative Development Building.

Nandi Avocado Farmers Cooperative Society Management courtesy call at CO Cooperative Development Dr. Benadatte Tiony.

The aim of the meeting was a courtsey call and a brief to the office on the progress of the society amidst it seeking guidance of ways of engagements with the county government through the department of Agriculture and Cooperative Development in achieving its specific objectives.

The County Government through the department has since partnered with key producer and marketing organizations through various partnerships to support and promote Avocado value chain in Nandi County.

Key amongt is True Trade Africa a trade finance organization that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the County Government through the NARIGP project to offer market access linkages to farmers with avocado and Irish potatoes as priority value chains.

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18 May
By: Peter Kiprop 0

SUPPORTING FARMERS AMID CHALLENGING TIME

Following the recent heavy rainfall that resulted to floods, mudslides and landslides which wreaked havoc and destruction in most parts of the country including parts of our county, the County Government of Nandi has responded by providing disaster relief support to affected farmers and families.
The heavy rains led to the displacement of families and damage to crops and infrastructure with the most affected areas being Chepkaroi and Mbogo Valley in Tinderet Ward; Chelogong, Tuiyobei and Kapkitany in Songhor-Soba Ward.
To address this, the County Government through the department of Agriculture and Cooperative Development has rolled out an ambitious plan to reclaim all escarpments and areas prone to land and mudslides by introducing and promoting planting of fruit trees and cash crops such as Coffee, Avocado and Macadamia to not only increase Food Security but to increase land cover and reduce soil erosion and landslides.
Speaking on Monday 18th May in Tinderet Sub County, Nandi Governor Stephen Sang noted that the relief support and certified coffee, macadamia and avocado seedlings (important sources of rural income) to the vulnerable families will improve both households income and nutrition as well as reducing water runoff and soil erosion.
He urged farmers to focus on increasing food production this planting season in order to enhance food security even as his administration continue preparing to combat Covid 19 pandemic.
“The aftermath of Corona virus will likely be shortage of food since most efforts are currently directed to the health sector. We are working with farmers and cooperative societies across the county in a bid to increase production and enhance diversification.” added Sang.
CECM for Agriculture and Cooperative Development Dr. Kiplimo Araap Lagat revealed that the maize seeds issued to affected families are fast maturing variety that can sustain itself under extreme harsh climate conditions. Dr Lagat said that the move is aimed at bridging the gap of food security during this difficult time as well as increasing the land cover along our escarpments and lands prone to landslides and mudslides.
He added that his department is working with Farmers’ Cooperative Societies FCS to help revive a high quality coffee industry and support coffee farming as a sustainable source of income while at the same time preventing soil erosion and drainage. He. Urged farmers to join FCS and gain access to more government assistance and become more competitive.
On their part, Tinderet Ward Member of County assembly Hon. Kipkurui Chepkwony and his counterpart from Songhor-Soba ward Hon. Justine Chepnyango called on the National Government to relocate the affected families to safer grounds and urged the residents to continue adhering to the guidelines and protocols issued by the Government
Alarmed by a potential rise in food insecurity during and post COVID-19 pandemic, the department of Agriculture on April first 2020 timely availed tractors and specialized farm implements to farmers and cooperative societies in a bid to enhance diversification, increase production and embrace small holder agricultural commercialization in our County.
To further ensure that vulnerable farmers are empowered financially to increase their farm productivity and profitability during this difficult time, the department disbursed cheques worth Sh26,494,200 to fund over 3000 farmers in 61 Common Interest Groups (CIGs), Vulnerable and Marginalized Groups (VMGs) and Nandi Potato Cooperative drawn from 12 participating wards across the county whose proposals were approved for funding under the National Agricultural and Rural Inclusive Growth Project (NARIGP).
Governors Sang’s Government assures her residents that his administration will continue mounting special efforts to keep agriculture safely running as an essential sector to ensure continuous supply of affordable and nutritious food so that consumers can still access and purchase food despite income losses.
#StayHome #GoToTheFarm, #KeepSafe.

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25 Apr
By: Faith Songok 0

FARMER COOPERATIVE SOCIETIES’ FUELLING THE COFFEE INDUSTRY IN NANDI

The Chief Officer Cooperative Development, Dr Benadatte Tiony this week, witnessed distribution of coffee seedlings to farmer cooperative societies in Tinderet, Emgwen and Aldai sub counties.

Chief Officer Cooperative Development, Dr. Benadatte Tiony distributing coffee seedlings in Aldai Sub county.

This is a continuation of the County Government efforts to strengthen the coffee sector in Nandi County. The County Government seeks to have the cooperative sub sector secure a large share in coffee farming.

Tinderet Sub County Cooperative Officer, distributing seedlings to Farmer Cooperative Societies in Tinderet.

In cooperating the Farmer Cooperative Societies is in the interest of the County Government to have coffee farmers interest secured both in overcoming marketing imperfections and increasing the farmers’ productivity and income.

Lolminingai Farmer Cooperative Society receive coffee seedlings from Betty Koech, Sub County Cooperative Officer.

Farmer Cooperatives that benefitted are Lolminingai Farmer Cooperative Society in Emgwen Sub County. Kapkiyai, Kibukwo, Kabunyeria and Kaabirer Farmer Cooperative Societies’ in Tinderet Subcounty, and Kirgirei, Koimet, South Nandi, Kemeloi, Toretgaa and Kimolinik Farmer Cooperative Societies’ in Aldai Sub County.

Dr. Benadatte Tiony, Chief Officer Cooperative Development supervising the allocation of coffee seedlings.

The County Government through the department of Agriculture and Cooperative Society is also looking into increased production, production of quality coffee and coffee marketing.

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09 Mar
By: Faith Songok 0

STRENGTHENING CONSULTATIONS TO NOURISH THE DAIRY COOPERATIVE SECTOR.

The Cooperative Development office on Monday led by the Chief Officer, Dr. Benadatte Tiony had consultative talks with Aldai Dairy Cooperative Society Management Committee.

The engagement aimed at addressing ways in which the dairy cooperative could facilitate early and prompt payment to its farmers.

The concern was that, farmers felt that the society was not assuming more milk marketing and sale facilitation especially in the wake of the large informal milk market characterized by rampant hawking of raw milk.

The Chief Officer Dr. Tiony highlighted the various approaches the County Government has taken to provide the dairy processing and marketing institutions within the county; with ways of facilitating high and fast payment of milk to its member farmers.

The establishment of the Nandi Cooperative Creameries is one of them. The processing plant has an installed processing capacity of 100,000 liters per day. It will operate with the 30 cooling plants spread out in every ward in the county; each with a capacity to hold 3000 liters of milk.

The project is expected to be a major boom to dairy cooperatives across Nandi. It will push for better prices of milk output channeled through the dairy societies.

Dr. Tiony also informed on the partnership the Department has with the Department of Trade and Industrialization.

This cooperation aims to put in place revolving fund that will support cooperative societies run their operations.

A Legislation is underway where a bill was prepared, signed by the cabinet and is now before the county assembly for approval. The County Government hopes upon consent of the bill to open the fund to Cooperatives.

The Chief Officer also committed to follow through an application by Aldai Dairy. The application was in request of allocation of investment funds provided for through NARIGP program.

National Rural Inclusive Growth Project (NARIGP) has supported 8 dairy cooperatives thus far with funds for investment and capacity building.

NARIGP is a project initiated by the national government supported by World Bank aimed at strengthening producer organizations and value chain development.

She also advised the Cooperative Society to consult with Transnational bank. The bank is in liaison with the County Government to help Cooperatives manage their financial scaling through facility funding.

In addition the Chief Officer urged the cooperative to build on their share capital by scaling up their numbers. She stated that the office will help through its Cooperative Officers to carry out capacity building and sensitization on the benefits of joining a cooperative society to farmers in Aldai.

“A large share capital means good business and therefore a good lure to dairy farmers who want to be economically sufficient.”

She encouraged the team to tap into the resources the County Government is providing to conceptualize and deliver trans-formative boost to dairy farmers in the cooperative.

Chief Officer Cooperative Development, Dr. Benadatte Tiony.

Aldai Dairy Cooperative Society Management Committee.

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07 Mar
By: Faith Songok 0

APPLE SACCO SETS PACE IN NANDI COOPERATIVE SECTOR.

With the County Government renewed focus in supporting and enhancing cooperative societies’ economic and social capacity, the Cooperative Development department on Friday joined Apple Savings and Credit Cooperative Society Limited a re brand of Kaimosi Tea Farmer Sacco on their 14th Annual Delegate Meeting held at Kaimosi Agricultural Training Centre.

Gracing the event, Chief Officer Cooperative Development, Dr. Benadatte J. Tiony applauded the society good progress and urged them to continue impacting the society in their role to support the each other economically.

She also recognized the traversing ability Apple Sacco has achieved in serving two counties. The Sacco has expanded its service membership to the neighboring county Vihiga, a unique feature most Sacco’s in Nandi are yet to achieve.

Chief Officer Cooperative Development, Dr. Benadatte Tiony.

The Sacco has also embraced the Front Office Service Activity which is performs banking like activities for the Sacco and is fully integrated with Back Office Sacco Activity.

Dr. Tiony also stressed on the importance of SACCOs. She stated that they are a key component to the economic wellbeing of the society.

She more so confirmed that Cooperative Societies contributes largely to the economic score of Nandi and thus why the government is keen to collaborate and include cooperatives among its key transformational agendas.

“Cooperative societies in Nandi have a share capital of over one billion and a turnover of the same hence they stand as economic and social pillars of communities in Nandi.”

The Chief Officer assured the SACCO of the government support, and pledged to facilitate a capacity building training to the society’s management and members.

She also pledged to give the SACCO 5000 coffee seedlings. The provision of coffee seedlings is among the many programs by the County Government aimed at improving the cooperative sector for more economic benefit to farmers in Nandi.

On that note, she informed the members on the need to use the government resources at their proximity like the Kaimosi Farmers Training Centre and the institution bus to build their organization.

The chief officer also urged the members to put in consideration the principle of good governance for the success and smooth operation of the Sacco.

She highlighted on the cooperative office restructure on the compliance framework.

“The office is channeling more structure to the adherence of legal cooperative governance framework. The emphasis on this will amplify transparency in cooperatives, enhance trust among cooperatives thus lure more people to join cooperatives to the immense benefit of all.

Dr. Benadatte concluded that the department will continue supporting and strengthening cooperative societies saying they are instruments for rapid economic growth in the county.

Apple Savings and Credit Society has over 4000 delegates as a representation of its members and is one of the best performing SACCOS in Nandi.

Also in attendance was a representative from Metropol  Credit Reference Bureau (CRB)  who led the members through an extensive talk on the importance of managing cooperative funds frontly through their systems to discourage loan defaulting  and encourage easy management of cash in the cooperative society.

Emgwen Sub County Cooperative Officer, Bismeth Maleya.

Metropol CRB representative.

Sacco delegates following through the meeting

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05 Mar
By: Peter Kiprop 0

FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION TO DEEPEN COOPERATION WITH NANDI COUNTY

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has expressed the willingness to deepen the cooperation with the County Government of Nandi in accelerating development programmes.

FAO representative to Kenya Dr. Tobias Takavarasha, disclosed this when he led national officials on a one day visit to Nandi County.

This was enable them assess the development progress and impact of the Land Governance Programme in Nandi County among other programmes supported by FAO.

The Land Governance Programme is being implemented by FAO in partnership with the Ministry of Lands and Physical Planning, the National Land Commission (NLC), the National Government and beneficiary County Government’s which include Nandi County funded by the European Union.

While officially receiving the delegation in the County, Deputy Governor Dr. Yulita Mitei, appreciated the partnership Nandi County has enjoyed with FAO in various areas of development and warmly welcomed further cooperation.

Dr. Yulita was particular with the support FAO has offered the County administration in the development of a Geo-spatial Information System (GIS) laboratory that supports the County Government in digitization of records related to land and has greatly influenced in decision making and policy formulation.

Since its launch on  May 18 2019, the GIS laboratory has enabled the user departments develop digital data register, which supports better decision making, planning, implementation and monitoring of development projects.

this has driven key interest in land administration, agriculture, natural resources, planning policy and capacity development.

FAO President who was accompanied by Council of Governors representative Ms. Eve Sawe lauded the county administration for adopting the GIS technology and leveraging the facility on prompt decision making in order to ensure effective service delivery.

The visit presented a unique opportunity for the County Government to connect with FAO and establish viable partnerships and support to the County Government on innovations and technology in Food and Agriculture sectors, with Nandi County seen as a potential food basket to help deliver the President’s Big Four Agenda on Food Security.

The team would later visit Kaimosi Agricultural Training Centre ATC where the County Government has partnered with FAO in setting up of a Milk Processing Incubator for Training purposes.

At Kaimosi ATC Mrs. Truphena Jepketer, a beneficiary of the programme gave a testimonial of how the facility has positively imparted her life and that of other women in the society.

“We are indeed grateful to the County Government and FAO for having facilitated our learning on, among other skills, the art of my milk value addition. We can now process Yogurt and Cheese among other milk end products right here in Kaimosi.” said Mrs. Truphena.

The delegation concluded their tour of Nandi by visiting Sireet OEP Tea factory in Nandi Hills for a fact finding mission where they were hosted for an informal lunch meeting by factory Board led by the Chairman. Their discussions centered on ways to strike a working partnership and working together to mutual benefit, particularly to assist smallholder tea farmers diversify, create alternative source of livelihoods and improve on their nutrition.

“A partnership between FAO and Sireet OEP will be an opportunity to work together in a new way,” said Dr Tobias. “Working together with you through FAO is all in our interests and most importantly it will help lead us to defeating mul-nutrition and poverty in this region,” he added.

CECM for Lands, Environment, Water, Natural Resource and Climate Change Dr. Philemon Bureti who accompanied the team appreciated the gesture by FAO to continue supporting and complimenting the county Government initiatives. He reiterated remarks by the Deputy Governor saying that the adoption of the GIS technologies in Nandi brings a lot of transformational data that influences service delivery.

Accordingly to FAO’s representative in Nandi Ms. Linda Achieng, the overall objective of the programme is to improve Food and Nutrition security through equitable and secure access and management of land for better livelihoods and socio-economic development.

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