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Government to sponsor 118 fresh agriculture graduates to undertake internship in Israel

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The Government of Kenya will sponsor118 fresh agriculture graduates to undergo an internship programme in Israel where they will be taught on the use water and irrigation in farming.

This follows the Israeli government’s pledge to train Kenyan youth on agricultural innovations as part of technology transfer in the sector.

Ministry of agriculture, livestock and fisheries Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri said yesterday the Kenya and Israel governments were implementing “The Jerusalem Declaration” or the “Declaration on Collaboration in Water and Irrigation”, an agreement that was signed between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in early 2016.


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In a speech read on his behalf by Chief Administrative Secretary Andrew Tuimur, Kiunjuri said the Israeli government has agreed to train local agriculture human resource with a view to enhancing its skills.

On Tuesday, Kiunjuri flagged off 118 fresh graduates to attend an 11 months practical training course as part of the agreement.

“To date 326 students have been trained under the biannual five week training and this annual 11 months training that has taken place since 2016 at the Arava International Center for Agriculture Training (AICAT),” said Kiunjuri.

The CS explained that the internship programme is expected to enhance the skills of fresh graduates and provide an opportunity of a mindset change that will ensure dedication, commitment and persistence at work for each one of them.

Enhancing human resource skills in the agriculture sector, Kiunjuri said the training is part of the food and nutrition security component of Big4 agenda by the Government.

“The President has pronounced himself on the country’s development agenda over the next four years through the Big 4 key pillars. The 100 percent Food and Nutrition Security Pillar is crucial for the other three pillars on Manufacturing, Health and Housing to succeed,” stated Kiunjuri.

He added, “To achieve these goals requires a well-trained, committed and energetic human resource in addition to concerted efforts through the collaboration & coordination of all our initiatives. I have also been informed that a significant part of the training prepares interns to become successful entrepreneurial farmers.”

The two States agreed to continue the ongoing six-year MASHAV (the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Agency for International Development) Practical Training Programme offered by the State of Israel.

The CS noted that Kenya’s economy is largely dependent on agriculture with about 80percent of the population living in the rural areas and deriving their livelihood directly or indirectly from agriculture.

Once the trainees are back in the country, they will work with the ministry to guarantee actualization of the food and nutrition security pillar of the Big 4 agenda.

Tuimur encouraged the farmers to maximize the exploitation of water and irrigation schemes already established to ensure high agriculture productivity.

Israel Ambassador to Kenya, Noah Gal Gendler, commended recent efforts by the Kenyan government to stimulate more growth in the agricultural sector. He assured of his Government’s support through intensive trainings, research and technological advancements.

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