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Govt releases youth funds

27 June 2013, 15:45 Kelvin Wanjohi

The government through the ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries has rolled out a programme that will discourage the youth from migrating from rural to urban areas in search of jobs and instead invest in livestock farming in rural areas, Agriculture and Livestock Cabinet Secretary Felix Koskei has said.

Speaking during the 11th Livestock breeders show held at Jamhuri Park organised by Brookside Dairy, Koskei said unemployment levels especially among the youth is a key issue being addressed by the government with utmost concern, noting that the youth have been left out on development agenda and their funds embezzled by corrupt officials.

Koskei said that KES 6 Billion has been made available at the County level and the youth will have easy access to it at low interest rates, unlike banks which have been discouraging them on investment due to higher rates.

Felix Koskei

“We have disbursed KES 6 Billion in the 2013/2014 financial year which will be accessible by the youth at the Counties. This will be as soon as final budget procedures are finalised and I urge them to access the banks and invest. They should borrow a leaf from breeders present today,” he said.

He urged the youth to be actively involved in raising the Agricultural productivity in the country by ceasing to migrate from the rural areas.

The Cabinet Secretary said that the youth should come up with sound business proposals and the funds will be released as soon as they are approved.

He noted that Kenyan Livestock sector especially dairy farming which contributes generously to the annual Gross Domestic Product has come of age since Kenya is the leading giant in milk and dairy products in whole of east and central Africa region.

“The country boasts of wealth in the Agriculture and Livestock sectors and we are the largest exporters of dairy products to East and Central Africa,” Koskei said.

He pointed out that every person over the age of 18 years have the right to access government funds, through government institutions such as the Agriculture Finance Corporation (AFC) which lends out at lower interest rates and invest in projects that will improve their living standards.

At the same time, he noted that a significant chunk of the agricultural financing would go to raising productivity, commercialization and competitiveness of horticulture, fish farming and other fast projects.

He stressed that dairy farmers stand to earn more owing to an increase in demand for milk and other livestock products due to the rapid urbanisation as well as a huge population thus the need to invest more in the sector.

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