West Pokot County led by the Department of Trade in collaboration with the Apiculture Platform of Kenya (APK), the State Department of Livestock and Equity Bank joined the rest of the world in marking World Bee Day celebrations.
The three- day event was created last year by the UN General Assembly, after Slovenia initiated the idea, to focus on the essential role of bees and other pollinators in keeping the planet healthy.
Speaking on behalf of the cabinet secretary during the celebrations held at Makutano Stadium, PS Harry Kimtai- Livestock said that it was time to recognize the value of bees and come up with interventions to prevent their eminent elimination.
“Bees play an integral role in pollinating our crops and we need to highlight on the need to ensure we preserve these insects. We need more initiatives to protect bees.” Pointed out PS Kimtai.
He however stressed on the need to come up with interventions towards mitigating threats posed by climate change. PS Kimtai said that agriculture is a key sector in achieving economic growth across the nation, hence the need to reposition the industry for growth by adopting better farming systems.
He added that the national government will support the Nasukuta Abattoir by equipping it, as a means of realizing the national government’s big four agenda.
Apiculture Platform of Kenya (APK) Chairman Dr. Stephen Kagio said that the platform aims at enhancing smooth and scrutinized flow of operations by various stakeholders across the beekeeping value chain.
Dr. Kagio however said honey production potential in West Pokot County has not been fully realized, calling on the various stakeholders to prioritize the plight of bees.
CECM Augustine Monges-Trade, Industry and Cooperative Development put more emphasis on the call to action to bring attention to the importance and fragile situation of bees around the world.
He said that his department will offer training and capacity building programs to farmers and beekeepers so that the quality of honey produced in West Pokot County is maintained.
“West Pokot County is known in Kenya for the quality of its honey. That is important for us. We need to ensure that we keep that quality,” he said.
CECMs Luka Chepelion, Joel Arumonyang, Ruth Kisabit, Emily Chepoghisio and Christine Apakoreng all shared their fellow CECM’s sentiments, pointing out on the need to adopt better farming systems that will not jeopardize important insects such as bees.
Chief Officer Alex Lokimoi while recognizing how crucial bees are, said that the county was lucky to be hosting the first celebrations in Kenya and the world over.
“We have the best organic honey in Kenya and to host these celebrations is a huge honor. We shall work closely with our people for greater economic growth through farming activities.” Said Mr. Lokimoi.
The celebrations provides an opportunity for governments, organizations, civil society and concerned citizens everywhere to promote actions that will protect and enhance pollinators and their habitats, improve their abundance and diversity, and support the sustainable development of beekeeping.