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Cane farmers suffer Sh50m loss in arson

BUSINESS
By Edwin Nyarangi | June 29th 2020
Emmanuel Lekishon a Crops Officer at the Keyian Farmers Cooperative Society. [Edwin Nyarange, Standard]

Keyian Farmers Cooperative Society in Narok County has incurred a Sh50 million loss following a second arson attack. 

The society’s chairman, Phillip Saiyuah, said the fire was started by unknown people on Friday night. They burnt down 200 acres of the 700-acre sugarcane plantation in what he termed as economic sabotage.

Mr Saiyuah said this was the second time such an incident was happening at the Group Ranch after a similar arson attack in May 2016; where 85 acres of sugarcane worth Sh13 million was burnt down by unknown people.

“It is unfortunate because this is the second time we are incurring such a huge loss,” said Saiyuah.

The vice chairman of the society, Leswamin Momposhi, said they do not understand the motive behind the attack.

Momposhi called on the government to carry out investigations to establish the people behind the arson on the ranch located along the Narok-Kisii counties border.

Trans Mara West Deputy County Commissioner Mohammed Hassan said security officers have launched investigations, and that security has been beefed up at the ranch.

“Keyian Farmers Cooperative Society has a General Service Unit camp in the vicinity. Also, the government will increase surveillance to ensure we do not have similar occurrences in future,” said Hassan.

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Farm manager David Kuya said they have spoken with the management of Transmara Sugar Company to harvest the remaining sugarcane in a bid to avoid further losses.

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