Miraa puts Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri on the spot

Former Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri who launched The Service Party of Kenya on Wednesday./COURTESY.

Nairobi, KENYA: A storm is brewing between Agriculture cabinet secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri and Miraa traders over remarks he made on Sh 1 billion meant to boost the sector.

This follows remarks the CS made on September 28th at the Gitoro ASK showground during the Meru diary union farmers day saying that the Ministry and the Meru county government had agreed that the funds should be redirected to Macadamia and Avocado farming.

Kiunjuri’s statement sparked public outrage however the last nail on the coffin for the traders came when the Meru governor Kiraitu Murungi said he had already issued 200,000 Macadamia and Avocado seedlings arguing that the crops are more economically viable as they have a ready market in China.

Speaking to the press in Nairobi on Thursday, Nyambene Miraa Association chair Kimathi Miunturi vehemently blasted Kiunjuri over what he termed as making policies without consulting.

“We express our anger and our annoyance about the decision of the cabinet secretary of Agriculture Mwangi Kiunjuri to allocate our Miraa to other crops other than miraa. We  would like to condemn the personal opinion of the ministry of Agriculture  CS Mwangi Kiunjuri accompanied by our governor Kiraitu  said that they are diverting Miraa fund to avocados and macadamia thus they have done it without consulting any of the Miraa farmers.”Kimathi said

The traders who are now threatening to go to court to stop Kiunjuri’s directive said that such an action goes against president Uhuru Kenyatta’s pledge to boost miraa in the country after some countries in Europe including Britain and Netherlands banned the importation of  Miraa .

The traders turned the heat to the Meru governor Kiraitu Murungi whom they accuse of collaborating with the CS to revert the fund.

The commodity has a large share of the market in the Coast and  North Eastern regions and in neighboring Somalia.