Government spokesperson Colonel (rtd) Cyrus Oguna has countered Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya’s recent remarks on locusts invasion.
CS Munya on Monday, February 17, claimed most of the locusts ravaging crops and grazing land in Kenya are destined to die of old age and are no threat to the country’s fragile food security.
Munya who argued that Kenyans should not worry about locusts said that the dreaded swarms have started turning yellow, and that science has it that they are son dying.
“They are yellow in colour. It means they are old locusts. They cannot harm crops. Their main concern now is looking for a place to lay their eggs,” CS Munya remarked at Gakurune Primary School in Meru.
But while addressing the press on Thursday morning, Oguna cited that Aerial spraying of locusts needs to be complemented by additional ground spraying.
Oguna argued that that the government has so far trained a team of 500 individuals from NYS and that 85 of them have already been deployed to Isiolo to help in spraying.
He says the team will also train others on how to differentiate between locusts and grasshoppers.
He said the government is closely working with Kenya Defence Forces, who have hence issued several land rovers to help in ground spraying.
Oguna further noted that enough napsack sprayers have been issued to help in ground spraying of the most dreaded locusts.
Col (rtd) Cyrus Oguna: Aerial spraying of locusts needs to be complemented by additional ground spraying… We have trained a team of 500 from NYS. 85 have already been deployed to Isiolo. The team will also train others on how to differentiate between locusts and grasshoppers pic.twitter.com/NBn4TOLFHR
— Citizen TV Kenya (@citizentvkenya) February 20, 2020
CS Munya’s remarks had set off national debate, including in the Senate, where the minister was accused of trivialising Kenya’s worst locust invasion in 70 years.
The CS was on Wednesday summoned by the senate to explain his ministry’s plan to manage the locusts and prevent them from spraying.