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Murang'a tea factories directors gear up for elections

 Jane Wanja plucks tea on a farm at Rwathia Village in Kangema, Murang'a. [Kibata Kihu, Standard]

The management of the 10 tea factories in Murang’a has welcomed the Tea Board of Kenya (TBK) directive to hold elections by the end of June.

The 60 directors led by Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) Board members, James Githinji and Chege Kirundi said they will abide by the regulator’s directive to restore order in the sector.

They are banking on their performance which has impacted positively on the sector in the last three years to retain their positions.  

In the meeting at Thika Greens Golf Course, the factory officials also said they will announce the annual bonus payment in September which will be higher than last year.

“The government decision on election should be respected,” said Kirundi, a lawyer.

He pleaded with the tea farmers to turn out in large numbers on the polling dates to cast their votes.

“The voting will be through secret ballot based on one farmer one vote principle. The share and proxy systems that were abused in the past have since been outlawed by the regulator,” said Githinji, a director at Ngere Tea factory.

Kanyenya ini Factory Chairman Alex Macharia Karuguru said the sector has improved owing to the coordination set by the TBK.

“At Kanyenya ini, the board inherited a dilapidated processing plant, and millions of shillings have been spent towards rehabilitation and sealing the leaking roof,” said Karuguru.

Murang’a County tea caucus chairman Joseph Karanja said the current directors have done a lot to improve the tea processing plants and ensure farmers deliver quality green leaf.

“In the analysis of performance in the year, the factories in Murang’a will make a major announcement about the annual bonus payment,” said Prof Karanja, the chairman at Ngere Tea Factory.

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