October 26, 2020

Kwale to Plant 5 million Seedlings despite Corona Pandemic

Mangrove tree seedlings being planted by locals. Image: (Courtesy)

By KAHONZI KALIWA

Email: thecoastnewspaper@gmail.com
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Kenya Forest Services (KFS) department in Kwale County has promised to plant 5milion trees this year in order to hit the target of 10 percent forest cover.

Addressing journalists in Kwale on Monday the county conservator George Wara said the exercise is set to kick off early next month in Kinango, Msambweni and Lungalunga sub counties.
Wara, however, lamented that continued charcoal burning within the county has adversely affected the forest cover which he says is as low as 5 per cent.
He revealed that mangroves would be planted in 100 hectares along the sea side in Msambweni, Vanga and shimoni.

Said Wara “These tree plants play a crucial role in climate change. While at the same time normal trees will be planted in another 347 hectares of land,”
He lauded a section of the farmers who have embraced the initiative during the during this rain season. 
Wara reminded the residents that ban against cutting of trees was still in force warning that violators of the same would face the law.

“We have organizations like Komaza that have kick-started the exercise of distributing 1.5 million seedlings to farmers in Lungalunga and Kinango sub counties. While Kutoka Ardhini organization aims to plant 1milion plants in the two dry sub counties,” observed the forester.
This comes as residents from more than 80 villages in Msambweni and Lunga Lunga entirely depending on mangrove businesses challenged the government to uplift the forest ban in south coast.

A fisherman sailing along a thicket of mangrove trees. Image (Courtesy)

The families led by Thabiti Mohamed laments that since the issuance of the forest ban 3 years ago their families have been suffering. 
“The government lifted the ban in Lamu last year, we want the same in Kwale County. We have no other means of survival.” lamented Mohammed.


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