Narok — President William Ruto has asked all those who have encroached on Government forests across the country to move out.
He warned of stern action against those who would defy the directive to move out.
President Ruto said the Ministry of Environment has been directed to ensure counties use the El Nino rains to plant trees as part of the efforts to achieve the 15 billion target by 2032.
He made the remarks on Saturday during the funeral service for Titame Ole Sankei, 98, a maternal uncle to Narok Governor Patrick Ole Ntutu, at Olopirik village, Narok West Constituency.
Dr Ruto assured Kenyans that proper measures have been put in place including fencing of Mau among the other 10 water towers to protect them from encroachment.
"We have intensified our efforts to achieve the target of planting 15 billion trees by 2032. We will use the El Nino rains to plant more trees as part of efforts to contain effects of climate change," said President Ruto.
"We will erect fence around all the water towers in the country to protect them from encroachment. This is why I ask those who have encroached on them to move out immediately," added President Ruto.
He said every county has been allocated certain number of trees to plant in line with the Government's agenda of attaining of the 15 billion trees.
He said Narok County has been assigned the responsibility of planting 450 million trees.
Present were Environment CS Soipan Tuya, Governors Ntutu (Narok), Joseph Ole Lenku (Kajiado), MPs Gabriel Togoyo, (Narok West), Kitilai Ntutu( Narok South), Ken Aramat (Narok East), David Ole Sankok (EALA), Rebecca Tonkei(Women Rep, Narok) and former Narok governor Samuel Tunai among others.
Earlier, President Ruto asked Kiambu County leaders to stop wrangling and serve the people.
He said leaders should work together and avoid divisive politics that undermine service delivery.
Speaking at Kamwangi grounds in Gatundu North, Kiambu County on Saturday, President Ruto argued that no meaningful development would be achieved if leaders continued to undermine each other.
"Leaders in this county should stop wrangling and serve the people," said President Ruto.
At the same time, President Ruto, cautioned that no one will be allowed to interfere with Government development initiatives in Kiambu County.
He directed Central Regional Commissioner and Kiambu County Commissioner to ensure Government lands, which have been grabbed were repossessed within the shortest time possible.
The Head of State regretted that some housing projects in Kiambu were yet to start because of failure by the county management to approve lands meant for the projects.
The county government has not approved the lands meant for some Affordable Housing Projects because they have been grabbed, delaying the construction work.
"I am directing the Regional Commissioner and the County Commissioner to move with speed and reposses all grabbed Government lands in this county to pave way for the construction of the Affordable Housing Projects, which are yet start in some parts of the county ," said President Ruto.
He said issues pertaining to development in any part of the country were not negotiable.
President Ruto said 20 markets will be build in the county as part of efforts to improve the working conditions for small scale traders including Mama Mbogas.
"We've already advertised tenders for 11 markets and work will soon begin," he said.
The President also inspected the construction of 67- kilometer Thika- Magumu road that will serve both Kiambu and Nyandarua Counties in improving access to agricultural and industrial production.
Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua said Kenyans should not blame the Government on the rising cost of fuel, saying the problem was global.
"Kenyans should be patient as efforts are being made to address the high cost of fuel, which is a global problem," said Mr Gachagua.
He said reforms were being carried out in the coffee sector with a view to identifying direct markets for farmers as the only way to get rid of cartels frustrating them.
National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung'wa said courts should not be used to frustrate Government efforts to initiate development projects.
"Those who have grabbed Government lands meant for development projects should surrender instead of using courts to frustrate initiation of projects aimed at transforming lives of ordinary people," said Mr Ichung'wa.
Governor Kimani Wamatangi said the problem of land grabbing in the county should be solved to pave way for initiation of development projects including the Affordable Housing.
MPs Karungo Thang'wa (Kiambu), Elijah Kururia (Gatundu North), George Koimburi (Juja), Alice Ng'ang'a (Thika Town), John Wanjiku (Kiambaa) and Anne Wamurathe (Kiambu Women Rep) called for unity among leaders in serving the people.
Water and Sanitation Cabinet Secretary Alice Wahome was also present. - Presidential Communication Service