Bungoma Residents Challenged To Take Up Indigenous Tree Planting


By Isabella Maua

Bungoma Governor Kenneth Lusaka and First Lady Dr.Margaret Makelo played host to Her Excellency Tessie Musalia in commemoration of World Environmental Day at Kibabii University Grounds.

Lusaka said that he’s pushing the quest to realize 15 billion trees in line with President William Ruto’s directive on increasing 30% forest cover to mitigate climate change and so far they’ve planted 20,000 seedlings.

“My administration has well-established structures to manage and conserve the environment through the Department of Tourism, Environment and Climate Change; we have undertaken several environmental measures across the county to materialize this,” affirmed Lusaka.

Among the strategies put in place is the formulation of policies such as the Climate Change Act, environmental and social safeguard policy, environmental policy (draft) and solid waste management (draft).

The Gazetteer of County Environment Committee has also brought together all environmental players in the county to enhance operations.

“We have put in place the Climate Change Committee in all the 45 wards across the county to address climate change-related impacts to improve the livelihood of the Bungoma people and my administration has taken interest in proper solid waste management in 50 urban centers across the county, including dumpsite management,” reiterated the county boss.

In Mt. Elgon, the event was headed by Kopsiro DCC Chapton Wachira, who emphasized every mwananchi being an ambassador in tree planting to bring the once-forested area back to life.

“We need our land full of trees back; every subchief now has a target of 3,000 trees and a duty to ensure no one cultivates 30 feet from the river banks,” announced Wachira.

Hudson Takur, Chepyuk ward Climate Change Committee Chair, encouraged the area residents to have unity of purpose and forge for a better environment instead of politicizing everything.

“It’s sad that we have very few people in this baraza today because most of you think anytime people gather somewhere it’s a political forum. Let’s embrace tree planting and avoid plastic use and dumping at all costs,” cautioned Takur.

The event was graced by Kopsiro ACC, CIPU Commander, area chief and Amani CBO, who donated over 2,500 bamboo seedlings in the quest to promote indigenous land cover and alternative fuel.

Over 500 indigenous tree seedlings were also donated by Ndiwa Sonit, an environmental conservationist who vowed to always donate 1 million such trees every year, challenging donors and well-wishers to give him support.

So far, Bungoma County has improved its tree cover from 7.9% to over 20% in 2023, and there’s more to expect as the governor undertakes urban planning with an emphasis on environmental conservation that includes the creation of green spaces, expansion of the sewer systems, proper drainage systems, and proper solid waste management, among others.

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