Gov’t to roll out value addition programs countrywide

By Stanley Wabomba

The program underscores the use of local resources to add value on locally available raw material

The government is working on modalities to roll out a value addition program targeting every village in the country.

Industrialization Principal Secretary Dr. Wilson Songa says the One Village One Product concept that has been under the pilot phase in seven counties has recorded tremendous success that the government now plans to work with governors to roll it out across the country.

Under the concept, groups at the village level are supported to boost their earnings through value addition.

As Industrialization Principal Secretary Dr. Wilson Songa explains the OVOP concept encourages groups to use local resources to add value to raw material they produce.

One such beneficiary is the Sweet ‘n’ Dried Enterprises group based in Tharaka.

The group says due to the intense sunshine experienced in the region, they are able to add value on their agricultural produce ranging from bananas, pumpkins, arrow roots, mangoes and sweet potatoes.

To pilot the concept, the government and development partners such as JICA have been working with 200 groups in several counties across the country.

After recording tremendous success, the government now plans to run the program in the remaining 40 counties.

All this is anchored on the premise that SMEs are critical in stimulating industrial activity.

Some of the benefits affiliated to OVOP include creation of employment, robust economic activities and transfer of entrepreneurship skills to the Kenyan communities at the village level.