Sugarcane farmers issue strike notice over Ksh.2.6B debt

Sugarcane farmers
File image of Sugarcane farmers. PHOTO| COURTESY

The Kenya National Federation of Sugarcane Farmers have issued a one week strike notice to the government over unpaid arrears amounting to Ksh.2.6billion.

Speaking to Radio Ramogi, the federation secretary general Ezra Okoth said they have served the Agriculture Ministry, sugar directorates among other relevant bodies with copies of the strike notice.

They are demanding that farmers be paid their arrears within one week from Tuesday failure to which they will take to the streets.

Mr. Okoth said they want the government to release the Ksh.2.6Billion to pay farmers arrears in all government owned sugar companies as was promised by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

He said farmers are not able to meet their financial obligations including payment of school fees and therefore the government must expeditiously release the funds.

The secretary general told farmers to prepare for a countywide strike in the next seven days incase the government will fail to release the funds.

He added that the government must change its attitude toward cane farming saying that it is the only cash crop which has a raw deal from government.

According to him, most cash crops including coffee, tea, and pyrethrum among others have been receiving better attention from the government.

He said the government needs to support the sugar industry as it is an important cash crop in this country.

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