The CBK Governor, Patrick Njoroge, has expressed his worry over the ongoing locust invasion in Kenya, saying that the invasion will dim economic growth.
Dr. Patrick Njoroge has said that the locust invasion will drive away investors if the government continues to act confused on what needs to be done to control the invasion.
Kenya’s economy is expected to grow at 6.2 percent in 2020 thanks to improved rainfall and affordable credit in the country, but with the locust situation, this could be negatively affected.
The governor is concerned that the locust invasion will affect agricultural output, which is a major contributor to the growth of the economy.
“This will affect food production in the country, and something should be done immediately to drive away the locusts, also, investors will only shy away if it appears, we do not know what we are doing,” said the governor.
Numerous organizations such as Oxfam, Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) among others, have also warned of the impending consequences if the locust situation is not addressed well.
Oxfam, in particular, has revealed that a large desert locust plague can contain up to 150 million individuals per square kilometer, with half a million locusts weighing approximately one tonne.
One tonne of locusts eat as much food in one day as about 10 elephants, 25 camels or 2,500 people. The insects can destroy at least 200 tonnes of vegetation per day.
According to the development organization, the plagues have come at a time when countries in the region, especially Kenya, risk facing food insecurity.
Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya has said it will take at least six months to control the locusts which have already invaded 10 counties in Kenya, among them Isiolo, Samburu, Wajir, Garissa, Tana River, and Marsabit among others.