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Muguka, miraa traders lower prices after Mombasa, Kilifi ban

 A lorry from Meru County arrives with sacks of Miraa at Kongowea wholesale Market in Mombasa. Miraa business is booming after the ban of Mogoka by Mombasa County on May 25, 2024. [Omondi Onyango, Standard]

Miraa consumers in Hola town, Garissa and Lamu counties are a happy lot following a drop in miraa and muguka prices.

The traders reduced prices significantly after Mombasa and Kilifi counties banned muguka.

Muguka consignment from Meru county is being diverted to Garissa and Tana River counties after Mombasa and Kilifi started enforcing the ban last week.

A spot check by The Standard revealed that traders from Meru have also increased trucks transporting miraa through Meru-Garissa road to Dadaaab refugee camp and Kismayu in Somalia via Hulugho border and Lamu port.

In Hola town, a packet of muguka which used to cost Sh100 now goes for as low as Sh50 while a kilo of miraa now retails at Sh150 from Sh400.

Hola Miraa/Mugoka Association Chairman Fred Imanyara attributed the fall in prices to the ban in Mombasa and Kilifi counties.

Imanyara said they were forced to increase muguka consignment to the region which they source from Mbeere and Siakago.

He appealed to the Tana River and Garissa governors not to impose a ban on the stimulant crops.

"Let them look for ways to stop the drugs that have left many people sick rather than fighting the cash crops that are not poisonous and helping many Kenyans economically. Proceeds from these crops have paid for the education of many senior people in the government," he said.

But Tana River Governor Dhadho Godhana said his administration was considering banning muguka in solidarity with other counties at the coast under Jumuiya Ya Kaunti za Pwani (JKP).

"Let it be known that muguka issue is a matter canvassed at the regional level by the apex leadership of the JKP. While other counties have taken immediate action, Tana River governor is still considering similar action," said Godhana in a statement yesterday.

The governor warned youths about the consequences of consuming the stimulant. 

He advised parents, the clergy, and the public to speak openly about the effects of muguka. 

Godhana also urged muguka traders to tell their clients the truth just like cigarette manufacturers who have labels showing the product is harmful to health.

Tana River director of revenue Frank Daiddo said that they have not banned miraa and muguka in the region.

Daiddo revealed that they were working on policies where miraa traders will not be allowed to sale other commodities like soda and cigarettes.

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