Trans Nzoia County Commissioner Gideon Oyagi has encouraged police officers to actively participate in the government’s tree planting campaign.

Addressing officers at Kitale Forest, where he led the planting of 6500 trees, Oyagi emphasized the importance of collective action to meet the ambitious annual county target of 11.9 million trees.

Expressing concern over deforestation that has depleted sections of Kitale Forest, Oyagi reminded the officers of their significant role in restoring the forest’s lost vegetation.

He highlighted the successful collaboration between National Government Administrative Officers (NGAO) and other stakeholders, resulting in the planting of 6500 trees in Kitale Forest Block 4. Oyagi urged all sectors to embrace this noble duty to achieve the annual target.

Encouraging local administrators to uphold government objectives, Oyagi warned the public that individuals caught illegally cutting and transporting timber would face legal consequences.

Trans Nzoia County Forest Conservator Eli Tinda commended the Kenya Prison Service for supplying tree seedlings and assisting in site preparation for the tree planting exercise.

Various indigenous tree species, including Meru oak, Croton Megalocarpus, Elgon Teak, Cordia Africana, and Syzygium Guineans, were planted. Tinda highlighted the importance of these trees in preserving water sources and purifying the air, especially in mitigating air pollution from Kitale Town.

Plans are underway to engage the local community and environmental stakeholders to restore 300 hectares of degraded land in Kitale Forest Block 4.

County Executive Committee Member (CECM) for Water, Environment, and Natural Resources Pepela Wanjala urged residents living near Mt. Elgon and Cherangany water towers to refrain from encroaching on and destroying forests in these critical areas.

Representatives from various law enforcement agencies, including the Kenya Police Service, Kenya Prison Service, Administration Police, and Kenya Wildlife Service, as well as Deputy County Commissioners, Assistant County Commissioners, and Chiefs from the county, were present during the tree planting exercise.