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Governors reject CS Peter Munya’s new regulations on tea sector

By Kirsten Kanja | August 29th 2020

Governors have rejected new tea regulations recently issued by the Agriculture Ministry, saying the rules do not respect functions and integrity of the county governments.

The Council of Governors instead called for a review, suggesting various amendments be made on the laws.

“The Council of Governors notes that the regulations do not respect the institutional and functions integrity of the county governments given the fact that agriculture and trade development and regulation are primarily functions of the county governments under the Constitution,” they said in a statement on Friday

The governors asked that county governments be authorised to issue licences for appointment of county tea inspectors, manufacturing, registration and licensing of warehouse premises as well as licensing of tea packers.

“Pursuant to the Fourth Schedule to the Constitution, agriculture and trade development and regulation have been devolved to county governments,” said the council.

“This therefore means all agricultural activities happening with the respective county government jurisdiction is regulated by that county. Registration of plantation tea growers should be regulated by the county governments.”

One of the regulations put out by Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya in May says a county government shall not impose any fees on tea, but the governors said this is a repetition of what is already provided for in the Constitution and should be deleted. 

“The centrality of devolution in the agriculture sector is something that cannot be wished away in the development of the tea industry and as such it should be emphasised in the Tea Regulations, 2020,” read the statement.

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