Inside Politics

Sugarcane farmers threaten agitation over increased imports

Friday, February 5th, 2021 00:00 |
Sugarcane farming. Photo/Courtesy

Bernard Sigei

Sugar cane farmers from Western Kenya have threatened to protest against sugar imports flooding the country.

Kenya Sugarcane Growers Association (Kesga) Secretary-General Richard Ogendo said the peaceful demonstrations will be conducted across all the private and public sugar mills.

Speaking in Kisumu yesterday, Ogendo blamed the government for recently letting in 20,000 tonnes of sugar from the neighbouring Uganda and over 57,000 tonnes to cover the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) safeguard for 2020.

Sugar Campaign for Change Secretary General Michael Arum said gazetted sugar regulations 2020 must be implemented as he blamed politicians for their woes.

“We request the national government to implement the gazzeted sugar regulations 2020 and stop politicians from meddling in the effort to reconstruct the sugar industry,” SUCAM Secretary General Michael Arum said in a statement.

Sugar regulations

According to Arum, Agriculture Cabinet secretary had gazzetted the sugar regulations only for some politicians to come in and coerce some farmers to renounce the regulations which would have seen cane farmers pocket sh 4,600.

“Kenya Revenue Authority is equally to blame for the brunt we are bearing because they have licensed entry of illicit sugar even as Comesa had put a stop to sugar importation,” said Richard Agenda, KESGA Secretary general.

Kenya Millers Association plans to convene a meeting with the sugar directorate to discuss how to deal with the cheap sugar found in the market.

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