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Boost for Agricultural Extension Services

Farmers in Vihiga County are set to benefit from extension services after the Governor commissioned two vehicles and 20 motorcycles.

Under the auspices of National Agricultural Rural Inclusive Growth Project (NARIGP) component three which deals with capacity building of county Governments to support community led development initiatives, extension officers will move with ease reaching out to farmers and giving information on the right farming methods and technology.

Speaking during the commissioning, Governor Ottichilo said NARIGP has been instrumental in inculcating new technology in farming and making Vihiga farmers move from the traditional subsistence farming to agribusiness. The procured vehicles and motorcycles will go a long way in extension services for farmers to upscale production while harnessing new farming technologies. The Governor said that capacity building is a critical ingredient in ensuring success of NARIGP. " Am challenging our youths to take agribusiness seriously because it pays handsomely than formal employment," said the Governor.

100 youths have been trained as Community Facilitators for the Field Farmer Schools (FFS) that will be educating farmers on the best farming practices. The FFS program will run for 20 weeks and aims to build capacity on new farming technologies to farmers.

Deputy Governor Dr. Patrick Saisi said extension services to farmers is critical because it makes farmers have the right information and get it right. He said vehicles and motorcycles easing movement of extension officers, farmers will have an opportunity to double their profits in agribusiness, an attribute he said will have a multiplier effect on food production in the county.

Agriculture CECM Geoffrey Vukaya said NARIGP operation period in the County has been extended from 2021 to 2023 and challenged farmers to take advantage of it and venture into agribusiness.

Chief officer for Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Pamela Busungu said extension services to farmers will enable Vihiga curb the perennial food shortage because farmers will have knowledge on the best farming practices on small acreages.

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CORONA Prevention Measures Instilled to the Governor's Scholarship Beneficiaries

As the debate on schools re-opening takes momentum , Vihiga County Government has trained the 220 students who are beneficiaries of the Governor's Scholarship on how to control the spread of Corona Virus among themselves when schools resume.

This is through the mentorship program which was held today's at Praise Center Church Mbale.

Speaking to the students, Vihiga Governor Dr wilber Ottichilo said that the world is entering an era which will only need people who can easily adapt to lifestyle dynamics some of which have been brought about by Corona Virus.

"Corona has changed the way of life and we have to live with it " said Dr. Ottichilo

Dr Ottichilo urged the students to adjust to the conditions brought to us by Corona so as to face life despite the challenges

"I want you to have paradigm shift in our lives so as to manage the pandemic" . Dr ottichilo added.

The Vihiga county boss however asked the students to take serious their education as is the only way to survive in the coming years.

In his remarks, Governor Ottichilo said the ECDE pupils will resume their learning one month after official opening of primary and secondary section.

ECDE Chief Officer Dr. Mary Anyienda said, most of the pupils do not understand any of the protocols set by the Ministry of Health on combating covid 19 hence the need for such knowledge before learning resumes.

The today's Mentorship Program saw the female students getting sanitary pads besides being trained against irresponsible behaviors

Vihiga County Government will issue facemasks and sanitizers to the students once they get back to schools.

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Climate Change Mitigation

Barely a few days after the inauguration of The Vihiga County Climate Change Fund Planning Committee, Vihiga County is set to benefit from financially locally-led climate change action (FLLOCA) program kitty marned by the World Bank and National Treasury.

Today, The Vihiga Governor HE. Dr. Wilber Ottichilo held a consultative assessment readiness meeting with a program coordinator for FLLOCA Mr. Peter Odhengo, program manager Dr. Maurice Pedo and a representation from CoG Mrs. Eunice Fedha. The assessment aimed at evaluating the County’s preparedness towards accessing the Climate Change funds, starting from March, 2020. The funds will be used towards mitigating the impacts of climate change in all the wards in the County.

The enactment of The Vihiga County Climate Change Fund Act, 2019, The Vihiga County Climate Change Fund Policy, 2019, The Vihiga County Climate Change Fund Regulations, 2019, The Vihiga County Climate Change Action Plan 2020-2025, Establishment of the Climate Change Directorate, are some of the key achievements of the County, enhancing the chances of accessing the funds in the first phase of dispensation.

The County government through Environment, Water, Energy and Natural Resources is currently in the process of setting up Governance Structures which include The County Steering Committee, The County Climate Change Planning Committee and Ward Climate Change Committees that are aimed at strengthening the County and Local community initiatives to mitigate the effects of climate change.

"When I was a member of parliament I tabled Climate Change bill in 2013, which was enacted into law in 2016. We want to bring climate change aspirations to the locals for me it's a very important program" Dr. Wilber Ottichilo.

Also in attendance, were The County Secretary Mr. Ezekiel Ayiego, Chair of County Assembly for Environment Hon.Vincent Atsiaya, Chief Officer for Environment, Energy and Natural Resources Dr. Richard Boiyo and his counterpart for Water and Sanitation Mr. Clement Manyulu, County Director for Environment (NEMA) Mr. Hesbon Monda and the Climate Change Unit (Alice Musuluve, Vera Muliro and Karani Chinzia).

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