Who proposed the deal?Buzeki has been claiming that he proposed the deal to NOREB Governors but they didn’t act on it.He claims he was to sell molo milk to them but they didn’t respond to the deal. Latest developments indicates that Buzeki has been using a proposal given to him by the NOREB counties who wanted to buy his diary processing plant in Molo.
It is claimed that ,the proposal was draft by the chair of Noreb H.E JACKSON K ARAP MANDAGO. Here’s a story to demonstrate;
Under the ambitious Noreb, eight counties have agreed to work together in an effort to spur economic growth in the region. The eight counties are Turkana, West Pokot, Baringo, Trans Nzoia, Samburu, Uasin Gishu, Elgeyo Marakwet and Nandi.
Noreb interim chairman and Uasin Gishu Governor H.E Hon Jackson K. Arap Mandago says the deal presents huge benefits for farmers.
“This is great news for farmers. It means access to a wider and unlimited market. For instance, a maize farmer in Uasin Gishu will now have an opportunity to sell their produce not just in Eldoret and its environs but they can explore other markets,” says Mandago.
North Rift region is classified as the country’s food basket and the eight counties hope to boost small scale farmers.
“Under Noreb, we intend to pull our resources and put up processing facilities to add value to products in respective counties. This will boost small scale farmers in marketing,” says Mandago.
He says respective counties have unique competitive advantage which they can use under the bloc.
Mandago says the joint economic block intends to establish fruit processing plants in Kerio Valley, a region where mango, pawpaw and banana production thrives.
He says value addition plants for passion fruits will also be set up in Uasin Gishu County.
On the dairy farming, the governor said that there was a mega plan on the milk producing counties to together and markets their milk to the dry counties within Noreb region as their 1st market.
“The intervention includes acquisition of a Noreb owned milk processing plant and a steady comprehensive improvement of the dairy catle pedigree in the region” added Mandago
He further hinted that the counties will enhance the school feeding program that will see all the nursery and primary school children drink free milk in school.
On his part, Turkana governor Josephat Nanok who is the interim vice-chair says this of the deal: “Noreb is the answer to an accelerated economic development in the region. Small-scale and large-scale farmers all stand to benefit from the arrangement.”
Elgeyo Marakwet governor Alex Tolgos said this is an ideal time for people to invest in farming.
He said, Elgeyo Marakwet County has investment opportunities in value addition especially for horticultural produce. Tolgos says fresh produce farmers should expect improved earnings through enhanced market for processed goods after establishment of processing plants.
“I have been marketing produce to middlemen who buy our passion fruits and later sell them to processing plants in other regions. We hope such will be addressed with the bloc,” says Joshua Rono, a passion fruit farmer from the area.
Tolgos says passion fruit producers will generate better income and minimise losses incurred during transport once processing plants are established.
Trans Nzoia and Uasin Gishu lead in maize production and Noreb intends to establish milling plants in the two regions to add value to produce.
Maize producing counties in North Rift produce over 10 million bags of maize annually. Each bag of maize weighs 90 kgs.
According to the County Director of Agriculture Edward Osanya, Trans Nzoia alone produces an average of 5 million bags of maize per year.
Mr Joseph Cheboi, the Uasin Gishu County Director of Agriculture says the region produces 4.5 million bags of maize annually and over 500,000 bags of wheat.
With Noreb, there are plans to build several milling plants which will also process animal feeds which will be marketed locally and internationally.
Turkana County has high investment opportunities in irrigation, livestock, hide and skin tannery and cottage industry.
Under Noreb, Nanok says abattoirs will be established to enable livestock farmers market processed beef products.