West Pokot Governor Prof. John Lonyangapuo on Tuesday donated 643 hybrid Galla goats to 585 farmers in 27 farmer’s common interest groups (CIG) to help them improve their animal breed.
Speaking at the Nasukuta Export Abattoir compound in the Chepareria area within West Pokot County, Prof. Lonyangapuo donated hybrid Galla goats as part of the government agenda of continuous improvement of breeding of cattle, goats, and sheep in the region and its commitment to support farmers earn more money from their livestock.
“This is part of the government programs that aim at improving the breeding of cattle, goats, sheep in the region to earn farmers more money from their livestock in the competitive livestock market,” Lonyangapuo noted.
The 643 Galla goats were donated to 586 farmers in 27 farmers’ Common Interest Groups in Sook, Endough, Alale, and Seeker wards within West Pokot County.
The Galla goats’ project is one of the agricultural value chains programs that the County Government of West Pokot implement through the Kenya Climate-Smart Agriculture Project (KCSAP), aimed at increasing agricultural productivity and profitability in the county.
Kenya Climate-Smart Agriculture Project is a Government of Kenya Project that is jointly supported by the World Bank and targets smallholder farming and pastoral communities in Kenya.
The County Government of West Pokot has so far distributed 1,896 Galla goats to farmers for cross-breeding and for them to have a pure quality breed for sale later.
Lonyanagapuo pointed out that the Galla goat matures into adults and attain market weight at around six months than the local breed which takes one year for a farmer to get cash.
“This particular breed of goat is the best since the farmer or groups stand to benefit from its early maturity age unlike the local breeds which take long almost one year for them to mature and the Galla goats are preferable good for quick money,” West Pokot governor noted.
The governor encouraged farmers to engage in climate-smart farming activities that will enable them to cater to their families.
“I encourage you, farmers, that you engage yourselves in climate-smart activities that will help provide a source of food, income, and employment and in the process improve your standards of living,” Lonyangapuo emphasized.
Philip Tingaa – KCSAP County Coordinator warned the members of the 27 farmers common interest groups not to sell or slaughter the Galla goats, saying they are meant for breeding purposes only as `seeds’.
Philip Kangalan a beneficiary lauded the initiative, saying that goats will help boost their livelihoods since they mature faster, and they fetch good prices in the market when sold.
“The Galla goat will help improve our livelihoods since they mature faster and attract good prices in a competitive market,” he said
Lucy Chebet, another beneficiary however noted the project will enable her get school fees for her children from the sale of the goats.
“I welcome the Galla goats project for it will enable me to breed goats that mature faster and from their sale, I will get school fees for my children,” she said.
The goats were bought from Laikipia County from the farmers who breed them and all the goats were vaccinated against diseases before they were donated to farmers’ groups for breeding.
Lonyangapuo reiterated his administration’s commitment to supporting all farmers by continuous improvement of breeding of cattle, goats, and sheep as they support the value chain programs in the region.