President William Ruto has ordered the Ministry of Environment and Forestry to look into the current uprooting of Baobab trees in Kilifi County.
Ruto issued the instruction on Monday morning, saying the exercise should be within the Convention on Biodiversity and the Nagoya Protocol.
“I have instructed the Ministry of Environment and Forestry to look into the ongoing uprooting of Baobab trees in Kilifi County to ensure that it sits within the Convention on Biodiversity and the Nagoya Protocol,” Ruto said.
The president said there must be authorisation and fair benefits for Kenyans.
“Furthermore, Ruto said the exercise must be in line with the Government’s agenda of planting 15 billion trees in a span of 10 years,” the president said.
“There must be adequate authorisation and an equitable benefit-sharing formula for Kenyans. Further, the exercise must be in line with the Government’s agenda of planting 15 billion trees in the next 10 years.”
Ruto’s directive comes after environmentalist Paula Kahumbu drew his attention and other Kenyans to the ongoing harvesting of the Baobab trees.
This comes against the backdrop of Tezo residents’ decision to do away with the baobab trees and replace them with food crops.
Tezo residents claimed the baobab trees dry their lands because of their ability to consume more water, use wider farm space and shield other plants from sunlight.
“Someone is allegedly digging up & selling ancient giant baobab trees in Kilifi County,” Kahumbu said.
“Please can you look into this and stop the destruction of our trees HE William Ruto has clearly communicated that trees are sacred to be planted not destroyed?”