You are clueless – Governor Barchok to CS Munya over tea exportation
Bomet governor Hillary Barchok is on a collision course with Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya over an alleged agreement by Bomet county a few weeks ago to directly sale tea to the Islamic republic of Iran.
Barchok entered into a deal with Iranian ambassador Jafar Barmaki a month ago to have tea produced from the country sold directly to Iran which is at the moment on the receiving end of trade sanctions from the United States of America (USA).
Speaking in Nairobi on Wednesday, July 14 Munya poked holes into the purported sale of tea agreement to Iran by the governor terming it fake while accusing Barchok of playing politics with the matter.
Munya said despite the idea being good due process was not followed by Barchok.
“From the information I have, tea from Bomet never reached the port of Mombasa. And if you sold the tea and it never came from any KTDA factories then you should tell us where it came from,” Munya told the governor.
However, while addressing the press at his office, the county chief criticized Munya saying he was speaking out of ignorance and that: “he should leave us to do what is within our reach to help our tea farmers get better pay for their produce.”
He also sought to confirm that the consignment of tea he flagged off at his office to be exported to Iran was from a private tea factory and not from any of the KTDA managed factories.
“We approached KTDA directors and the factory unit managers but because of the ongoing wrangles they never supported the idea and that is why we engaged the local factories,” he said.
Asked on how the tea farmers from the county were going to benefit out of the deal since a larger percentage of them supply their green leaves to KTDA factories, Barchok only told the farmers to sell their tea to where it offers good price.
“Tea is like a cow at your compound, you decide where and who to sell your milk to so farmers make their own choices,” he stated.
Maintaining the tea was ‘on its way’ destined to Iran, an adamant Barchok said he will be leading yet another delegation of selected tea farmers to the country on July 28th, to go and receive the tea.