Agricultural Employers Association Seeks Clarity on Proposed Fines on Home Animal Rearing

Cows feeding at an animal farm
Cows feeding at an animal farm

The Agricultural Employers Association (AEA) on Monday demanded clarity on the proposed piece of legislation suggesting that Kenyans will be required to pay for permits to rear animals in their homes.

Speaking during a stakeholder engagement, the AEA officials stated that they would be engaging the government to determine the extent of those who will be affected by the proposed legislation.

“One of the things that farmers are seeking to address is the various aspects of the Finance Bill, 2024  that will affect their membership and their businesses going forward,” stated the AEA.

The association is demanding information to determine if the bill’s propositions will affect every farmer including those who have two domestic animals or just commercial farmers.

Livestock breeders showcase their animals at Gicheha Farm in Nakuru County in 2018
farmingKenya / Facebook

This follows the proposal outlined in the Animal Production Professionals and Technicians Bill 2023, which stated that Kenyans rearing farm animals without a licence may soon face a fine of Ksh500,000 or be jailed for six months or both.

The Bill further elaborated that each licence issued shall be valid from January 1 to December 31 of the year.

Additionally, despite the proposed licenses, the Association has raised several issues affecting farmers in the country such as the fertiliser scandal which saw Kenyans purchase substandard products under the government subsidy programme.

The Agricultural Employers Association (AEA) also warned that the agricultural sector is at risk due to the government's failure to pay over Ksh12 billion in value-added Tax refunds owed to farmers.

According to the Association, the delay could cripple the sector's growth.

“Our members are mainly exporters to the European market and the VAT refund has not been done for a while, to the tune of Ksh12 Billion. This is money that could be used to expand the sector,” stated AEA.

Further, the Association detailed that the organisation's members had resorted to declaring their employees redundant over the tough operating environment.

Vegetables at a market place. AFA is tasked with regulating the importation and exportation of the crops.
Vegetables at a market place. AFA is tasked with regulating the importation and exportation of the crops.