Politicians accused of defending counterfeit sugar barons

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Former Kakamega County Chief of Staff Nabii Nabwera addressing Lugari residents
Former Kakamega County Chief of Staff Nabii Nabwera addressing Lugari residents

Politicians have been accused of defending businessmen who are sabotaging the country’s economy as well as oppressing sugarcane farmers through illegal importation of sugar. Speaking at Mwamba in Lugari Sub County, former Kakamega County chief of staff Nabii Daraja Nabwera said it was disappointing to see a number of politicians coming out strongly to defend sugar barons at the expense of poor sugarcane farmers.

Nabii said Kakamega, Bungoma and Busia Counties relied majorly on the sugarcane economy and it was regrettable how some leaders from the Western region had given sugarcane farmers a blind eye and concentrated on defending cartel for their selfish interests.

“Currently we have hundreds of farmers in this region who have mature canes on their farms they are struggling to get harvest permit yet those who are supposed to help them  are supporting illegal importation of sugar into the country, where will our farmers take
their canes?’’ posed Nabii.

He said if the importation was allowed to go on, it will lead to the collapsing of the local sugar industries and not only will farmers suffer but also thousands of youths working in the factories will be rendered jobless.

He alleged that some of the leaders from Western had been paid to defend West Kenya Sugar Company officials after being linked with illegal sugar importation.

Nabii appealed for a thorough investigation into the contraband sugar saga and legal action be taken against all those behind it.

He said it was disappointing that despite several tonnes of contraband sugar being nabbed at the Rai paper mills in Webuye, leaders have remained silent about the issue and those believed to have imported it are walking freely. “I want to say Rai is sabotaging the economy of this country. First, we are not sure he has paid duty for the imported sugar, second, the sugar he has brought into this country has not been tested for human
consumption and third, turning Rai paper into a sugar warehousing store is illegal,” said Nabii, as he called for unity in the fight against the illegal importation.