Kiambu County Governor, Hon. William Kabogo has said his government had rolled out a number of economic initiatives aimed at job and wealth creation in the county. He added that he was keen to work with Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology to ensure technologies and innovations from the University could be mainstreamed in the County’s development programmes.
Hon. Kabogo singled out aquaculture as a key sector that has provided gainful employment to thousands of Kiambu residents yet fish farming in the County continue to face a number of challenges. Consequently, the County has adopted scientific approach in extension services within the agriculture docket.
The Governor was speaking Wednesday November 23, 2016 at JKUAT where he opened the inaugural Eastern Africa Aquaculture Symposium and Exhibition.
Vice Chancellor Prof. Mabel Imbuga said JKUAT had developed a number of interventions in the fish value chain that could be deployed to buoy production and value addition of the commodities in the country.
She mentioned aquaponics- an integrated crop and fish production- as one of the technologies available for Kiambu farmers to tap.
Giving examples of Seychelles, Mauritius and Cape Verde which have transformed their economies through sustainable exploitation Prof. Imbuga said time had come for Kenya to tap into its blue economy.
Worldwide, aquaculture is deemed to be among the fastest growing with rates as high as 11% annually. Compared to Asia where the industry is producing 90% of the global fish demand, Africa’s global fish supply from aquaculture stands at a paltry 3%; with East Africa posting diminutive 1%.
Prof. Imbuga welcomed the suggestion of the Governor that the two institutions work together to establish an animal feeds factory that can supply quality and affordable fish feeds to promote aquaculture in Kiambu.
Earlier, Governor Kabogo presented approved building plans for a noodles production company to be established at JKUAT. He said the County was happy to see the construction of the company at University, adding that it will provide job creation for sorghum farmers in the region.