Kajiado County Governor Joseph Ole Lenku has called upon pastoralist communities in Kenya to be pro-active in pushing for national policies and legislation on pastoralism for it to be accepted as a viable business and a way of life.
He said Northern Kenya had for a long time been at the fore front of pushing for such policies and legislation on pastoralism. He revealed that Kajiado County had joined the fold and with strong representation of leaders from pastoral communities in The Senate and National Assembly, they were assured of responsive laws.
“Kajiado County is a key pillar in advancing development for our country anchored on the big four agenda championed by our President Uhuru Kenyatta”, said the Governor.
The Governor was speaking on Wednesday while hosting a gala for pastoralists at the ongoing Kenya Pastoralists Week in Kajiado where he challenged key stakeholders in pastoralism to engage in policy making processes at National and County level since that is the only way they would entrench prosperity of the trade in the face climate change that is threatening to disrupt their normal way of life.
At the same time he implored upon investors to consider Kajiado as the next business frontier endowed with expansive landscape, beautiful scenery and a cosmopolitan composition of cultures.
Speaking at the same function, County Commissioner David Kipkemei while praising the County Government for hosting the Pastoralist week,he urged the Maasai community to shun petty clanism and unite as one people adding that such groupings were the root cause of disunity and mistrust among the citizens of the County.
“Kajiado is the most peaceful and loving County, we should avoid uphold our culture but avoid petty clanism”, said Kipkemei.
His sentiments were echoed by trade CECM, Jackline Koin who called on the residents to maintain peace and tranquility that Kajiado has been known for adding that it is this that has made it the cradle of culture.
“Never run away from your culture but let us all work as one people,” said Koin.
Also present at the function was former Senate Speaker, Ekwe Ethuro.
The Kenya Pastoralist Week is a platform that brings together pastoralism from across the Country to discuss among other issues, pastoral practices, livelihood and legislation governing animal trade and movement. This forum is key as it happens in the face of imminent climate change that has changed pastoral patterns and it is hoped that the stakeholders will learn from and adopt best practices from other Counties.
The year’s theme focuses on Supporting Climate Smart Pastoralism in Kenya through approaches geared towards transforming and reorienting pastoralism development under new realities of climate change.