Taita Taveta County is hosting a 2-day meeting to negotiate and buy herbal products that would be subjected to scientific validation as potential immune boosters as part of the efforts to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and similar respiratory diseases.



Dr Evans Taracha Coordinator National Products Industry NPI Initiative while speaking at the Coast Institute of Technology CIT, Voi stated that research on herbal medicines will give findings on required dosage, safety and efficacy.



“ We have had a Prior Informed Consent Agreement with this County and Mighondi Community Based Organisation CBO guided by the Nagoya Protocol ratified in 2014 by Kenya. This project therefore is contributing to the  domestication of the Nagoya Protocol by Kenya, an important milestone ,” Dr Taracha said.



He added that the Agreement is also guided by the Kenyan national legislation: Protection Knowledge and Cultural Expression Act 2016.



Director, Youths, Sports, Gender, Culture and Social Services Wallace Mwaluma remarked that this strategy targets to merge science, herbal products and indigenous knowledge IK to boost health standards.




“Final products will be patented, coded and priced accordingly per market standards. We hope this will boost the livelihoods of the locals, the County and the national economy as well, “ Mr Mwaluma said.



Jaxon Shako, Chairperson of CBO Mighondi Economy and Conservation Network said that tapping and harvesting will be done without harming the trees for sustainability.



“ Young people are now able to gain indigenous knowledge to ensure continuity, “ Mr Shako said.



83-year-old HDr Ngonyo Katera who brought samples to the venue dreams that this initiative will be a success while encouraging youths to take over the mantle.



32-year-old Vincent Mwawasi, Chair for the Young-Champions-for-Culture, Taita Taveta County also an apprentice learning traditional medicines, said that the program will help the youthful Kenyan populace pick up necessary  skills to ensure continuity in technical knowhow.



The meeting is a result of collaborative efforts between the National Government represented by NPI, which is a Vision 2030 flagship project under National Museums of Kenya, in the State Department of Culture and Heritage and the County Government of Taita Taveta.