Saturday, March 14, 2009


The Government has dissolved the whole board of Kenya Meat commission yesterday following the decline in the management and a clear policy of running the ailing parastatal based near Athi-River in the Machakos District.

Formed in 1950, KMC is the oldest and most experienced meat processing organisation in Kenya, with products like corned beef and fresh cuts of beef, mutton and goat meat.

After Kenya got it's independence, The Kenya Livestock Development Project (KLDP) was launched financed by the US Agency for International Development and the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation which had an ambitious national strategy aimed at completely reforming Kenya's livestock industry. Grazing blocks were started in the northern rangelands of the country and group ranches were set up in the southern rangelands. Immature stock was to be brought from the northern Kenya and sold for fattening and finishing in the better-watered areas of the south. Purpose-made trucks were provided to ferry stock south to the KMC and ranches.

Because of bereaucracy and corruption, The outfit(KMC) has never had a serious business strategy helping the nomadic communities of Kenya. It has never been headed by someone from a nomadic community background and so it went from one board of directors to another.

"There is no one really attending to the livestock problems. That is why there are problems all over," says Aden Keynan, who represents Wajir West (in NEP) in the Kenyan Parliament and a member of the Pastoralist Parliamentary Group.

"So, literally the livestock farmers have nothing. He is at the mercy of nature, at the mercy of middlemen, at the mercy of everyone. There is no institution that takes care of his interests." The parliamentary group wants a minimum of 10 percent of the government's budget assigned to the pastoral sector.