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Sugarcane farmers' officials call for protection of investors against political threats

News By Ignatius Odanga | October 30th 2020 at 03:45:00 GMT +0300

Sugarcane farmers lobby groups have called for the protection of investors against hate-mongering politicians in Busia county.
 
The Kenya Association of Sugarcane and Allied Products (Kasap) and Busia Out-growers Company (Boco) warned at a news conference that despite the county having been rated by World Bank among the best destination for investment, the region risks losing investors due to political threats.
 
The concern by officials of Kasap and Boco come hot on the heels of remarks by Amukura Central MCA Moses Ouma who early this week while attending a funeral in Teso South said he will rally locals to stage demonstrations against a group he said are non-locals.
 
Olepito sugar factory is situated in Teso South constituency. The Secretary General of Kasap Peter Odima said there are better ways of ironing out grievances by leaders other than threatening to evict some workers.
 
“Being a leader the best he should do is to seek audience with management of the factory and find an amicable solution and not incte the residents,” said Odima.
 
He recalled how some candidates who had attended a verification exercise in Budalang’i after applying for the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) were attacked and chased from the venue by rowdy youth because they were not from the region.
 
TSC officials in Busia attributed the incident to incitement by the politicians.
 
The incident happened a few days after Nangina MCA John Obwogo warned that if TSC fails to employ 70 per cent of teachers who had applied for the job, interviewees from outside Busia will be chased.
 
“We are witnessing a bad trend by the politicians and that must not be condoned. There is a need for security agencies to tame the politicians,” said Odima.
 
Boco’s director Lambart Ogochi observed that cane farmers in Busia have benefitted immensely from the two factories, Busia Sugar Industries (BSI) and West Kenya’s Olepito Sugar factory, and urged local politicians to refrain from inflammatory remarks.
 
“As the representatives of the sugarcane farmers in the region we shall not sit down and watch invetsors threatened by politicians for political mileage,” said Ogochi.
 
Ouma said, "I am going to organize a demonstration with the sole aim of sending home some officials at Olepito sugar factory because the majority of the employees do not come from our region but from other places.”

Sugarcane farmers
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