Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in conjunction with West Pokot County Government on Tuesday handed over a farmers market to the business women of Sebit, Batei ward. The farmers market was constructed at a cost of Ksh.1.5 million. The market is set to help 42 women from Sebit market. Present to present the market to the women was FAOs West Pokot Project Manager Mr. Giuseppe Debac and Batei Ward Administrator Mr. Wilson Chemworis who represented the County Government.
“We are very grateful to FAO and the Italian Government for coming up with such a noble idea of empowering our women. The business women in this region have been having a hard time selling their farm produce on the roadside. They have to run to the road chasing after vehicles to try and sell their produce. There is danger of them being run over by speeding vehicles. This market will now make their work easier. I will also speak with the officials at the Ministry of roads to ensure that we have speed bumps erected here to slow down the speeding vehicles.” Chemworis stated. Mr. Wilsson also noted that the market will not be able to serve all the women in the market and he therefor asked them to share the little available resources with those that were not able to secure space in the market.
|Mr. Giuseppe Debac and Batei Ward Administrator Mr. Wilson Chemworis|
The chairlady of the women group Mrs. Eunice Kapkata was very grateful to FAO and the County Government for the project. She said that the women are very excited and happy because they now have a decent place for their fruit selling business. “This project will greatly improve our business and we are now dignified as the business women of Sebit. FAO has done us proud. We are now asking other well-wishers for follow suit and help us construct a toilet, provide lighting and also provide a water tank to be used in the market.” She stated.
Giuseppe on the other hand thanked the County Government who recommended that the market be built at the land provided. One of FAOs goals is elimination of poverty and the driving forward of economic and social progress for all. Its strategic objective is to reduce rural poverty by defining a coherent approach to rural poverty reduction in the context of a broader strategy for sustainable rural development. In this regard, FAO noted the need for the women of Sebit and they identified the market as the best solution to their need as women farmers.
|Wooden Structures used by the women in the market|
“We are very pleased with the location given to us to construct this market because it is close to the fruit nursery.” Giuseppe said. He urged the farmers to maintain high standards of hygiene and also ensure that the wooded structures they had been used should be brought down now that they have been given a better facility for their business. Giuseppe also asked the women to make sure they elect a committee that will ensure a smooth running of the market.
|Mr. Giuseppe showing one of the women her kiosk|