INFLUENCE OF AGRICULTURAL GOVERNANCE ON FOOD SECURITY: A STUDY OF FARMERS IN BURA IRRIGATION AND SETTLEMENT SCHEME IN TANA- RIVER COUNTY, KENYA
RAMADHAN, HABIBA GUYATO
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Agricultural governance constitutes the augmentation of growth and development of agriculture and allied sectors. Agricultural governance is managed through a set of goals, policy implementation, stakeholder involvement and technology application for enhanced agricultural productivity. As a construct, it is adopted in the irrigation sub-sector which has greater potential to increase crop productivity and combat food insecurity. Despite the foregoing, documentation of its contributions to crop productivity for realization of food security in public irrigation schemes remains largely scanty. This study sought to analyze the influence of agricultural governance on household food security among tenant farmers in Bura Irrigation and Settlement Scheme (BISS). Descriptive survey design was used to carry out the study. Purposive and systematic random sampling techniques were used to obtain a sample of 4 key informants and 225 tenant farmers. A semi-structured interview schedule and a Focus Group Discussion (FGD) guide were used to collect the data. The collected data was analized using descriptive statistics with the helpof the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) and Minitab.Ordinal logistic regression was used to determine the influence of agricultural governance factors on food security while qualitative data was analysed thematically guided by the study objectives.The results indicated low status of the studied aspects of agricultural governance in the scheme whereas food security status of the farmers was generally poor. Regression results reveal that there is a significant relationship between food security and three of the studied aspects of agricultural governance; policy on land reallocation, achievement of the objective on improving food crop production in the scheme and on the farmer involvement in the functioning of the Kenya seed company presented with the p values < 0.05 (0.03, 0.02 and 0.002).The study concludes that the implementation of agricultural governance in BSSI was low. Food security situations among the residents in Bura irrigation and settlement scheme was a major concern. The main challenge in the production of both food and cash crop in BISS was water shortage. The study recommends establishing of strategies for ensuring full implementation of all the existing policies and setting up of new ones to enable the residents to achieve food security in BISS. There is need for famers in BISS to adopt crop diversification to improve chances of securing food and income of the household. Food crop production in the scheme, Land tenure system and the extent of farmer involvement in the seed supply by Kenya Seed Company are the significant areas of concern to be emphasized. The study recommends that proper investment should be done in water department to finance the acquisition of modern equipment to ensure constant and efficient supply of water to all farms.