Residents from Burat, Wabera, Bulapesa, Ngaremara and Oldonyiro wards in Isiolo County have consented an earlier proposal made by the Isiolo Council of Elders to have the abattoir operated by a private investor.
Speaking during a public forum held in Isiolo Town on Tuesday, various speakers showed their concern over the county or national government managing the newly completed abattoir which awaits funds from the World Bank to install the remaining equipment to ensure that the abattoir is up and running within the next few months.
The facility that is earmarked to provide meat for export especially to Arab countries has a capacity to slaughter 1000 goats, 100 cows and 50 camels every day, giving hope of a reliable market to livestock farmers in the region.
Osman Dima, a resident of Wabera ward and livestock farmer however argued that the individual or company who lands the lucrative opportunity to run the abattoir should do so on condition that animals from local herders must be bought even if they do not meet the required weight and size.
He also argued that local youths must be prioritized when it comes to job opportunities despite lacking the required expertise in animal health and meat processing courses.
He urged the county government to train the local youth so that they may be the front-line beneficiaries when the time comes.
Dima’s issue attracted the County’s assembly’s deputy speaker David Lemantile and the chief officer’s in charge of livestock and fisheries Benjamin Lopetet who urged the local youths to study line courses so that they can stand a chance of gainful employment at the abattoir.
They assured the members of the public that a bill will be tabled at the county assembly to formulate laws that will govern the operation of the Isiolo abattoir to ensure that the locals and mostly the youth to benefit optimally putting their fears of the organization to manage the slaughterhouse trampling the locals rights to the job opportunities to rest.
Further public participation forums are set to be conducted in Merti and Garbatula Sub counties tomorrow and Saturday before a final decision is made on whether to hand over the abattoir to a private investor or the County government takes charge of its running.