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Panic as locusts continue to wreak havoc



Strained resources and lack of enough personnel are some of the key challenges in the the government’s efforts to contain the locust invasion in 10 counties so far.

The destructive pests have spread to Isiolo, Samburu, Wajir, Garissa, Marsabit, Laikipia, Mandera, Kitui, Baringo and Turkana.

Agriculture Principal Secretary Hamadi Boga, who on Thursday supervised aerial and ground spraying Lengusaka in Samburu East, admitted that the government was struggling with inadequate resources.

The PS said only five aircraft used for spraying and four helicopters for surveillance were at their disposal.

He added that poor networks in remote areas challenged coordination between the ground team and pilots but reiterated the government’s commitment to containing the situation.

“Our resources are strained as the aircraft are serving all affected counties. Also, our officers are exhausted from battling the pests for the past three weeks,” said Prof Boga.

On dealing with the mature locusts expected to lay eggs in a week, the PS said the government would target hoppers.

“The locusts have started copulating and will soon start laying eggs. We have tagged sprayed areas with GPS to help us in dealing with hatched nymphs,” he added.

The PS, who was with officials from Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the African Union (AU) and the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (Kephis), said the government would purchase more pesticides for all counties in a week.

READ ALSO:   Locusts now in Embu County as residents cry for help

He added that more officials from the ministry would tour the counties, alongside county officials, to assess damage and institute mechanisms to restore normalcy.

Prof Florence Olubai, an entomologist from the University of Nairobi who took samples of the locusts at Lengusaka for testing, said the government must prepare to deal with nymphs as adults have started laying eggs.

“The government only needs to monitor hoppers after they hatch and before they fly,” she said.

Ms Luiza Munyua, a Senior Scientific Officer at Inter-African Phytosanitary Council, has been touring affected counties for assessments and will compile a report for action by the AU.

Meanwhile, at least 80 officers from eight of the affected counties have been trained on how to contain the pests.

Officials from Garissa, Wajir and Baringo, where three swarms have been spotted, blamed the government for slow response, noting grazing fields and food security were at risk.

The swarms were seen at Damajaley and Sabena in Wajir, and Kamurio in Tiaty, Baringo.

One of the three swarms in Wajir was on Wednesday spotted heading towards Hadado near the county’s border with Isiolo.

A total of four swarms have been spotted at Laresoro, Ndonyo Wasin, Meibai and Lengusaka in Samburu.


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Asbel Kiprop quits athletics, takes up rallying



Banned middle distance athlete Asbel Kiprop says he has quit athletics to try his hand in motorsport.

Th 30-year old former world and Olympic 1500m champion made the announcement on Facebook.

“I am ready to begin again in a sport that doesn’t have doping conspiracy. I will be patient again to be able to be champion. I will be climbing the ladder hoping to learn the next game,” he wrote

The move was also confirmed by veteran rally driver Abdul Sidi who says Kiprop is ‘desperate’ to make the career switch.

“The former world and Olympic 1500m champion is looking at the Abdul Sidi Rally Advisor (ASRA) to help change his famous career to become the next rally driver,” said Sidi.

Kiprop, who dominated the middle distance races during his prime, is currently serving a four-year ban slapped on him last year after failing an out of competition test.

The athlete who is also a police officer has protested his innocence but the world doping body maintains both his ‘A’ and ‘B’ urine sample tested positive for EPO.

Kiprop then treated his fans to off the track drama when he filmed himself groping and kissing his manager’s girlfriend, an incident that led to the collapse of his marriage.

READ ALSO:   Locusts now in Embu County as residents cry for help

He then courted more controversy by posting a message in social media threatening to take his own life.


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Police hunt clergyman who allegedly killed his son



Police in Murang’a County have launched a manhunt for a retired Anglican Church of Kenya clergyman who allegedly killed his own son with the assistance of his other son.

The incident took place on Sunday morning when the father and his elder son picked their kin at home where he was sleeping and tied him around a tree in their homestead and beat him to death.


An eyewitness, a grandchild to the clergyman, gave a blow-by-blow account of what happened, saying the father to the deceased had on Saturday called his other son who lived some kilometres away and instructed him to report to his home early in the morning for an assignment.

“I overheard my grandfather call my uncle urging him to report early in the morning to assist him with some chores. When he arrived, he was informed that they needed first to discipline my uncle (the deceased) and that’s when they picked him… they tied him around and descended on him with sticks until he died,” the witness said.

He said the deceased kept screaming and making distress calls but none of the neighbours came since there is bad blood in the neighbourhood.

An eyewitness said the suspects decided to ‘discipline’ the deceased after he was accused of stealing farm produce.

READ ALSO:   Locusts now in Embu County as residents cry for help

The suspect’s mother was in the homestead when the incident happened.


“She made desperate efforts to have his father, my grandfather, not kill him. I was also threatened not to go near the scene or else I would be disciplined too. After the incident I called my parents who live in Nyeri and informed them of the matter,” he said.

Locals described the deceased as a peace loving, hardworking and social man who farmed tomatoes for them.

They said the main suspect retired from service last year after serving as an evangelist with the ACK diocese of Mt Kenya Central.

“The deceased was social but had issues with his father emanating from a land dispute, John Kiiru, a resident said.

The body of the deceased had severe injuries.


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“I am carrying Lamu Senator Anwar’s baby” an excited Saumu Mbuvi reveals



Just Valentine´s, Saumu Mbuvi surprised us with a grown baby bump and she reveals the father is Lamu Senator Anwar Loitiptip.

The two have been dating since 2019 though it was gamble letting the cat out of the bag, on who was warming her bed until fans unveiled his face.

So now, the Nairobi Governor´s daughter confirmed she is indeed pregnant and due to deliver in a few months.

Saumu Mbuvi proudly flaunts second pregnancy

However, baby´s gender is not known to her yet.

Speaking of the pregnancy, Saumu affirmed that Lamu Senator-cum-lover, Anwar Lotiptip is her baby´s father.

Saumu and Senator Anwar expecting first child together

Adding that Anwar is pretty happy and excited about the pregnancy.

BY Ghafla

READ ALSO:   Locusts now in Embu County as residents cry for help
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