Cabinet Secretary, Prof. Margaret Kobia on Friday 27th, officially launched the Greening Kenya project at National Youth Service (NYS) Headquarters, Ruaraka following a directive from H.E. President, Uhuru Kenyatta to increase the forest cover from 7% to 10% of the land mass by 2030.
Prof. Kobia highlighted the need to plant trees in order to confront the effects of climate change and the increasing intensity and magnitude of weather-related disasters in the country that have aggravated conflicts over natural resources such as pasture and water.
“The importance of planting trees and achieving adequate forest cover in our country cannot be overstated. Our country is experiencing frequent changes in weather patterns that have led to extreme weather occurrences. Droughts, famines, and flooding becoming a commonplace. Environmental scientists have advised that the only way we can stabilize these extreme occurrences in our region is by planting more trees,” she said.
The Cabinet Secretary urged the Ministry Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to honor the presidential directive and ensure nationwide tree planting in their respective environments. “It is our duty and our responsibility as Kenyans and Government Officers to participate in the recovery of our forest coverage from 7% to 10%.”
The exercise kicked off with the planting of 1000 trees. So far, MDAs have planted 1.7 million trees in the 2019-2020 Financial Year. The target for 2020-20121 Financial Year is to plant 10 million trees.
The Ministry and NYS paid pending bills amounting to KES. 6 Billion to suppliers in the 2019-2020 Financial Year. KES. 15 Billion will be paid in this financial year 2020-2021.
Also present at the event was Principal Secretary, State Department for Public Service, Mrs. Mary Kimonye, Principal Secretary, State Department for Gender, Prof. Collette Suda, NYS Chairman, Rtd General Njuki Mwaniki, NYS Director General, Ms. Matilda Sakwa among other senior Government officials.
By Andrew Ishepai