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Cruise reports

RV Mtafiti

  • Principal Secretary, University Education and Research, Amb. Simon Nabukwesi (centre) with CEO of National Research Fund (NRF) and KMFRI Director Prof. James Njiru (left) during a tour of KMFRI cage culture at Kibokoni, Kilifi County, a project funded by NRF on 24th September 2020
  • KMFRI Director Prof. James Njiru, gives a press briefing during the Kenya Climate-Smart Agriculture Project (KCSAP) at KARLO, Naivasha. Prof. Njiru underscored the need for aquaculture farming saying that it is the only way that a country could meet the fish demand in the country as opposed to relying on capture fisheries.
  • KMFRI Director Prof. James Njiru (4th right) accompanied by Mr. Abraham Kagwima (3rd right) and Dr. Dr Peter Odote (far left) visited KEFRI Enterprises on 11th August 2020 to learn how their successful business wing works. The model is being adopted by KMFRI Enterprise.
  • Inception and sensitization meeting: The project implementation team is led by KMFRI with research scientists Dr. Kevin Obiero (left), Dr. Domitila Kyule, Ms. Fonda Jane Awuor and Esther Wairimu.


The research vessel christened RV Mtafiti was commissioned by His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta on January 27, 2014, boosting oceanographic surveys. Before acquiring RV Mtafiti from the Belgium government, nearshore fisheries estimated 150,000 metric tonnes. After taking over RV Mtafiti, its estimation is 243,941 metric tonnes valued at Sh60 billion. The vessel has improved Near-Shore Ecosystem Surveys, Fisheries Catch Assessment Surveys in Coastal Kenya, and ultimately led to formulation of much improved Fish Observer Programmes.

The data generated through the surveys has been handy in assessing fish production trends to aid decision-making by management in formulating policies aimed at enhancing sustainability of the sector. Researchers have established a steady increase of fish biomass, harnessing the Blue Economy, the next economic frontier.

The vessel has facilitated fishing surveys in Exclusive Economic Zones and territorial waters. Further, data generated is disseminated to local fisher communities and other stakeholders to empower them.

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