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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Rift Valley police plan disarmament programme
across Kerio Valley region in northwest Kenya

by Robert Manyara KITALE (Xinhua) -- The Kenyan government plans to launch a massive security exercise in Kerio Valley in northwest Kenya, a branch of the Great Rift Valley.

More than 30 people have been killed there in the past three months.

George Natembeya, Rift Valley regional coordinator, said the forceful disarmament program will start soon, adding that the government is mapping troubled areas before deployed security forces start to retrieve illegal guns.

"We are currently mapping out the areas targeted for the disarmament program.

"We want to get rid of the guns from the hands of the civilians in order to restore peace in the region," said Natembeya.

Areas targeted for the intended operation include six counties of Turkana, West Pokot, Baringo, Elgeyo Marakwet, Laikipia and Samburu.

The official noted that the government is asking leaders from these communities to persuade their people to surrender illegal firearms to the government before the exercise begins.

Natembeya warned that the exercise will be painful.

"It will be painful, but we have to do it for the sake of innocent Kenyans.

"These guns are the root cause of banditry and are being used to fuel communal conflicts.

"We have to remove them and restore peace," he said.
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EARLIER REPORTS:

Kenya plans to reform livestock sector to improve productivity

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya on Tuesday announced plans to overhaul the livestock sector to increase productivity, a government official said.

Harry Kimtai, principal secretary of the State Department for Livestock in Kenya’s Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation, said that plans are underway to make the sector a profitable venture for farmers.

"We are reviewing our national livestock policy and a livestock plan of action to ensure that the sector becomes profitable and sustaining," Kimtai said during the launch of a report on the future of Kenya’s livestock industry in Nairobi.

He said that the government is re-organizing its land use programs to ensure that the livestock sector that accounts for 4.4 percent of Kenya’s GDP continue to benefit many communities.

Kenya currently has 44.6 million poultry, 26.7 million goats, 18.9 million sheep, 18.8 cattle, 3.2 million camels and 1.9 million donkeys.

           

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