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Sh1M fine for agriculture graduates operating without a license

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Agriculture graduates in Kenya face a one million shillings fine or a three-year prison term if they are not registered and have a license once a new proposed bill is passed by parliament.

The Agricultural Professionals Registration & Licensing Bill, 2024 requires that all agriculture professionals holding a degree, diploma, or certificate be registered to run a private agriculture practice.

The bill describes a private practice as an agricultural job where you receive total or shared profits or losses from a business.

Sponsored by Tigania West member of parliament John Mutunga the bill states: A person who practices as an agricultural professional in Kenya and is unregistered commits an offense and shall, upon conviction, be liable to a fine not less than one million shillings, or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years, or both.

Mutunga, who is the chairperson of the National Assembly Committee on Agriculture, said that the bill will establish working guidelines for agricultural professionals to safeguard high standards and practices within the agriculture sector.

“Our economy is heavily reliant on agriculture, we must ensure that the services being offered to our farmers is first rate,” the legislator said. 

The Agricultural Professionals Registration and Licensing Board established under the bill will be the body responsible for licensing agriculture professionals and receiving an as-yet-communicated yearly membership subscription fee.

To qualify as an agricultural professional, the bill requires you to be an agriculture graduate who practiced crop production, horticulture, plant breeding, seed technology, agronomy, botany, crop science, food science, agricultural economics, agribusiness, floriculture, biotechnology, soil & water engineering, or agro-forestry from an institution recognised by the Agricultural Professionals Registration and Licensing Board.

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