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CS rallies farmers to support new coffee regulations

KNA          The government will dissolve coffee cooperative society management committees that are frustrating farmers’ efforts to apply for loans from the newly established Coffee Cherry Advance Revolving Fund.


Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya says some unscrupulous management officials bent on maintaining the status quo where farmers were compelled to secure expensive loans from either coffee millers, marketers and some banks were frustrating the government’s initiative aimed at enabling farmers to access low interest loans.

 As a result, Sh3 billion cherry fund kitty set aside by the government is lying idle in the bank with only a few farmers applying for loans.



The CS said the government would now use the national government administrative officials to ensure that the loan application forms reached farmers at the grassroots after realizing that some society officials were reluctant to avail them to the farmers.

  Munya further threatened to sanction management officials sabotaging the initiative. 

  “Many of you think it is a joke. But I assure you we cannot continue that way. Those who will not sign the forms so that farmers can get the money will have the society management dissolved and farmers will elect other people who will help them access the money,” he said.


He said some management committees were reluctant to have farmers apply for the money so that they could continue borrowing high interest loans from millers, marketers and financial institutions.

The CS wondered why farmers should be compelled to go for high interest loans from lending institutions while there was the Coffee Cherry and the Commodity Funds lending money to farmers and societies at the rate of three and five per cent respectively.

  Munya at the same directed the Directorate of Criminal Investigations to probe Rumukia Farmers’ Cooperative Society officials who borrowed money from Taifa Sacco sinking the farmer’s outfit into debt.


The investigations will also loop in Taifa Sacco officials who authorized the release of the Sh60 million which has since grown Sh160 million owing to accrued interest.

  Munya was addressing farmers at Karatina Stadium in Mathira East and Kaiyaba Stadium in Mathira West Monday.


The CS has been on a three days’ tour of Nyeri County for public participation forums on the draft Coffee Bill, 2020.

 

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