West Pokot Governor John Lonyangapuo has urged the national government to disband Kerio Valley Development Authority (KVDA) and its functions be fully transferred to counties.
Lonyangapuo said the authority has been operating for many years with little impact being felt on the ground.
He said agriculture functions were devolved to the counties and wondered why the authority carries out the function, claiming KVDA has never initiated successful projects in the area.
Speaking yesterday after touring Wei Wei Irrigation Scheme in Pokot Central sub-county, the governor said maintenance standards of the scheme have declined because of poor management by the authority.
“Production of maize seeds from the scheme has drastically dropped owing to poor management and urgent measures need to be put in place to save the situation,” he said, adding that the scheme was meant to improve the region’s food security.
“This is the only irrigation scheme in this region and water intake is not working well with poor roads to the intake. We shall not sit and watch the project being run down. Urgent measures need to be put in place,” he said.
Sigor MP Peter Lochakapong urged KVDA to speed up completion of phase three of the project, saying the authority has taken too long to complete it.
He said phase three of the project will benefit more than 300 households and will help improve the area economy.
“Phase three was launched in 2016 by the President and until now farmers have not started benefiting from it and we urge KVDA to speed up the process,” he said.
Wei Wei scheme chairman Mark Meut asked KVDA to help local farmers in division of the plots and improve the farm drainage system to enable easy flow of water from one plot to another.
He said the scheme currently benefits about 2,000 farmers by producing maize seeds that are supplied to Kenya Seed Company, adding that after completion of phase three more than 3,000 people will benefit from the project.
The irrigation scheme was aimed at enhancing food production, diversifying from livestock keeping and reducing over reliance on relief food.