By Rogers Aghan, February 8, 2023, Kitui Governor, Julius Malombe met with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) officials and the Japanese Ambassador to Kenya, Ken Okaniwa, regarding climate change and environmental conservation through research on drought-tolerant tree species.
Ambassador Okaniwa reiterated that the Japanese government has supported reforestation moves in Kitui through JICA with assistance from the Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI).
This has been done by developing drought-resilient tree varieties.
“We are keen to introduce new and improved varieties of trees which are more resilient to the drier climate such as the melia volkensii which can be used for timber production besides improving the county’s tree cover,” he noted.
Kitui is also said to be among 20 counties which JICA intends to engage with in adoption of the novel approach so as to reinforce the efforts of farmers in their decision-making protocols regarding tree varieties.
The governor applauded the JCIA for their deliberate support to climate change adaptation efforts in Kitui county.
“My administration is committed to upscale tree planting in every corner of this county in order to enhance Kitui’s forest cover thereby mitigating the adverse climate change effects which have over the years threatened water and food security,” he said.
Malombe welcomed JCIA’s contribution towards success of his extensive conservation scheme, adding that Kitui county supports President William Ruto’s nationwide target regarding tree growing.