The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Kenya launched its five-year Country Programming Framework (CPF). This came at a time when drought, emerging animal and plant pests and diseases and epidemics have put roadblocks towards transforming agri-food systems to make them resilience and sustainable. Tackling these challenges forms the main part of the document that was launched.
The Four Betters
Through its FAO Strategic Framework 2022–2031 upon which the CPF is derived, FAO Kenya, seeks to contribute towards Agenda 2030 through more efficient, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable agri-food systems to achieve the 4-Betters – Better Production, Better Nutrition, Better Environment and a Better Life. While aligning its programs with the Government of Kenya Priorities in agriculture sector as set out in the Bottom-up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA) and the Fourth Medium Term Plan of the Kenya Vision 2030 (MTP IV). Key among them include improved uptake of digital agricultural solutions, increase the number of young people and women access to productive resources, heighten climate action to build the resilient food systems. The CPF is built around the two anchors namely: – Sustainable and resilient nutrition-sensitive agri-food systems and governance and social inclusion in agri-food systems. It will be implemented at a total cost of USD 105 million.
The Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development who was the Chief Guest during the launch lauded FAO’s support to the government. He noted that FAO came in strongly during desert locust invasion. “Through the intervention the government managed to protect pas, oralist livelihoods in our Arid and Semi-Arid lands (ASALs) averting a loss of 11,338 ha of crops, worth USD 3.4 million.” Said Hon. Mithika Linturi.
Linturi noted that the Anchor number one of our Agriculture Sector Transformation and Growth Strategy (ASTGS) looks at increasing the Small-Scale farmers, Pastoralists and Fisherfolk incomes by providing opportunities for farmers to earn better incomes. The ASTGS aims at transforming agriculture through modernization of on-farm production, shifting production towards more climate smart solutions, and driving more resilient food systems in crops and livestock sectors. And this he noted is in tandem with the aspirations of FAO CPF.
“FAO has been supporting the government in emergency interventions and resilience building, but climate-change emergencies are becoming more frequent, intense and our approach must therefore change from reactionary to being pro-active. This calls for better planning, coordination, and precision surveillance at both National and County Government levels.” Carla Mucavi the FAO Kenya Country Representative said during the launch.
Aligning to Government Priorities
Mucavi added that climate change is real and its adverse effects on mother nature are becoming more frequent and severe; and the global community has agreed on the need for firm and consistent climate actions to mitigate these challenges. She noted FAO’s effort in building resilient food systems.
Medhin Tsehaiu, the Country Director at UNAIDS on behalf of the Resident Coordinator lauded FAO for developing and launching its CPF. She noted that the CPF was aligned to the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF) for Kenya and reiterated that the UN Resident Coordinator will support FAO in the implementation process.
The CPF will contribute to strengthening policies, institutions, and investments for agrifood systems transformation within the scope of the Agricultural Sector Transformation and Growth Strategy (ASTGS) and the food systems transformation pathways at the national and county levels. The five result areas of the CPF are: – Climate-Smart Crop, Livestock Fisheries and Aquaculture Production Systems, enhanced Inclusiveness and Efficiency in Agri-food value Chains, enhanced Climate Actions across Agri-food Systems, Sustainable use of Biodiversity and Natural Resource Management; and mainstreaming Inclusivity and Institutional Strengthening to reduce inequalities and exclusion in Agri-food systems.
Also present during the launch were the Governors of Laikipia and Wajir Counties Hon. Joshua Irungu and Ahmed Abdullahi respectively, the Deputy Governor of Kisumu County Dr. Mathew Owili, Principal Secretaries – Hon. Patrick Kilemi, State Department of Cooperatives and MSMEs Development and Hon. Joel Arumonyang, PS – Ministry of Lands, Housing, Public Works and Urban Development – State Department for Public Works and other senior government officials. Other dignitaries were Mariatu Kamara – IFAD Country Director, Anna Mutavati, UN Women – Country Representative, Dr. Abdourahmane Diallo, WHO – Country Representative, UNICEF was represented by Mr. Ismael Ngnie Teta, Head of Nutrition.
The FAO’s goal of agrifood system transformation aims to generate a future where all people have access to healthy diets, which are produced in sustainable and resilient ways that restore nature and deliver just, equitable livelihoods in a sustainable manner.