Nyamira tea farmers urged not to uproot crop over low bonus
EARNINGS: A section of Nyamira leaders have pleaded with tea growers from the area not to uproot the crop despite the low bonus payment by Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA).
They said the tea sub-sector forms the basic source of income to most of the area residents and therefore uprooting it means creating more poverty into their homes .
Led by members of the County Assembly from the tea growing wards, they, however, called for the removal of all directors managing the six factories for mismanaging the sector.
Bomwagamo Ward Charles Barongo said as leaders they could not allow few people in the name of directors to mismanage the sub-sector, which many farmers depend on .
“As your leaders,we are kindly asking you not to uproot the crop.We know the payment was shocking,disturbing and painful but give us time so that we can address the root cause of this once and for all,” he pleaded.
Barongo also challenged all the directors manning the six factories in the county to immediately resign before they are compelled to do so.
He also called for the full implementation of Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya’s proposals if the tea industry is to proper .
A KTDA board member in charge of Nyamira county James Achoki said the prices had gone down unlike the previous years because of over-production and the Covid-19 pandemic .
“We still have a lot of tea in our warehouses which was not auctioned because of the coronavirus pandemic restrictions,” he told Business Hub .
Barongo told the management to move with speed by making that the tea in the stores is sold in the month of October so that the farmers can get their money before December .
Nyeri Senator Ephraim Maina on Saturday said farmers have made a hue and cry about low bonuses, hence KTDA, being a public body, should be answerable.
It’s no use waking up one day and declaring that the bonus is Sh20 or Sh10. It is disheartening to farmers,” he said.