Centre Management

Thematic programmes

Philip K. Leley
Centre Director, KALRO AMRI Katumani

PHILIP LELEY, the Centre Director KALRO AMRI Katumani is an alumnus of Egerton University from 1990 to 1993. He accomplished his MSc on maize breeding at Moi University 2003-2008. He later studied his PhD in South Africa at the University of Kwa Zulu -Natal in 2007-2009. Dr. Leley has served as maize breeder for the eastern marginal lands since 2006. He has been a principle scientist on various maize breeding projects since 2010. He is developing maize varieties for mid altitude areas.

Daniel L. MutisyaDeputy Centre Director,KALRO AMRI  Katumani  

DANIEL MUTISYA, the Deputy Centre Director, KALRO AMRI Katumani, has a doctorate degree in Agricultural Entomology (2014) and an MSc in Agricultural Entomology (2010), both from University of Nairobi. His doctorate study area on cassava green mite pest has enabled correction of the mite (CGM) species as Mononychellus progresivus (Doreste) after molecular analysis. He holds a Bachelor of Science (2006) in agriculture from the Kenya Methodist University. He has also documented widely integrated management of cassava green mite (CGM) in different ecologies in East Africa. He has evaluated and and pulished recommendation of sorghum harvest at soft dough grain stage to prevent loss by birds. He has 15 refeered Journal papers and 10 national and international conference papers. Recently (2017), he has identified at molecular level, the red spider mite on Brachiaria grass, as Tetranychus urticae (Koch). Dr. Mutisya works in Crop Health Programme of Food Crops. He continues to supervise post harvest students on Agricultural Entomology and crop product post-harvest technologies along various chain values.

Agricultural mechanization

Reuben Ruttoh has an MSc in Agricultural Engineering from the University of Nairobi (2013) and a BSc in Agricultural Mechanization from Egerton University (2000).

Sorghum & Millets

Clement Kamau holds a PhD in sorghum breeding (2005) from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa, an MSc in crop breeding principles from the Mississippi University in USA (1996) and a BSc from the University of Nairobi (1981). He is an established sorghum breeder with over 20 years experience.


David Karanja holds an MSc in agriculture (1994) in the area of crop physiology, a BSc in applied science in rural technology (1990), both from the University of Queensland, Australia, and a Diploma in general agriculture from Egerton University (1986). He has been a Principal Investigator in various projects funded by the European Union, Swedish International Development Agency (Sida), the Internal Development Research Centre (IDRC) and the Australian Centre of Internal Research (ACIAR) continuously between 2009 and 2017. He has vast experience in seed systems and also the grain legume coordinator in KALRO.


Fatuma Omari holds a BSc and Diploma in Agriculture from Egerton University, Njoro. She is currently pursuing an MSc in horticulture. Fatuma Omari has previously worked with other scientists and helped in releasing of several cassava and sweetpotato varieties. She is involved in amaranth technology development, and dissemination of proven technologies farmers particularly the vulnerable groups.

Root & Tuber Crops

Benjamin Kivuva, holds a PhD in Plant Breeding from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa (2014), an MSc in Agronomy (2005) and a BSc in Agriculture (1998), both from the University of Nairobi. He has advanced elite lines of sweetpotato at National Performance Trial (NPT) level for immediate evaluation for variety release.


Murenga Mwimali, holds a PhD in Plant Breeding from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa (2014), an MSc in Crop Breeding (2008) and a BSc in Agriculture (1997), both from the University of Nairobi. He has collaborated with the International Centre for Maize and Wheat (CIMMYT) on various National Performance Trial (NPT) level for immediate evaluation for variety releases.


Crop Health

Sila Nzioki, holds an MSc in Plant Pathology from the Kansas State University, USA, and a BSc in Agriculture from the University of Nairobi. Nzioki has extensive knowledge and experience in plant pathology through research on a variety of diseases of food crops, sugarcane and grasses. He is experienced in classical and molecular characterization of plant pathogens, screening for disease resistance and development and validation of disease and parasitic weed management strategies with a special bias on biological control. He has been involved in biological control of aflatoxins on maize using atoxigenic Aspergillus flavus strains, analysis of mycotoxins along crop value chains, and biological control of Striga and Alectra weeds. He is well versed with design and implementation of projects, and in diagnosis and management of diseases. He is involved in disease diagnosis and provision of advisory services on disease management to clients, and in training farmers, researchers, students on attachment, extension agents and other stakeholders on plant disease identification and management.

Livestock pasture improvement

Donald Njarui holds a PhD in animal production from Egerton University (2007) and an MSc in agricultural science from the University of Queensland, Australia (1995). He has a wide experience in tropical forages research and their roles in farming systems in the semi-arid regions. He has participated in several national, regional and international research projects involved in developing and up-scaling technologies for smallholder farming systems. He has published widely in refereed international journals, books and conferences. Njarui is involved in collaborative research with Biosciences east and central Africa/ International Livestock Research Center Hub (BecA/ILRI Hub) on integrating Climate smart Brachiaria grasses for improving livestock production in East Africa, targeting Kenya and Rwanda. He has over 100 publications in refereed journals, book cahpters and conference papers. The programme is funded by Swedish International Development Agency (Sida). He is also mentoring 4 post graduate students from Kenyan and Germany universities. He serves in several committees including the Editorial and Technical and Management Committees.

Natural Resource Management

Elias Gichangi holds a PhD in Soil Science from University of Fort Hare in South Africa. Among his research interests is Up-scaling and promotion of integrated soil fertility and water management strategies for increasing productivity in mixed dryland farming systems using various approaches. He is widely published in high rated international journals. Among the professional institutions he is affiliated to the African Network for Soil Biology and Fertility (AfNet) of the Soil Biology and Fertility (TSBF) CIAT. He reviews for the Tropical and Sub-tropical Agro-ecosystems Journal and is an external examiner at South Eastern Kenya University.He is currently heading the Natural Resource Management Research Program at KALRO-Katumani.

KALRO Seed Unit