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KTDA processes tea farmer earnings after operations resume

Friday April 23 2021

ktda-raid

Police officers in Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) Nairobi offices on April 17, 2021. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NMG

geraldandae By GERALD ANDAE
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Summary

  • Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) officers raided the agency’s headquarters in search of evidence of alleged malpractices at the firm, which the government has blamed for low earnings to farmers.
  • The detectives were acting on a directive issued by President Uhuru Kenyatta requiring the Attorney-General to conduct an audit into activities of KTDA.
  • The raid resulted in disruption of its services to the smallholder farmers.

The Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) has started processing tea farmers’ earnings for March following the restoration of the information, communication and technology (ICT) services that had been disrupted after detectives confiscated some of its computers last week.

Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) officers raided the agency’s headquarters in search of evidence of alleged malpractices at the firm, which the government has blamed for low earnings to farmers.

The detectives were acting on a directive issued by President Uhuru Kenyatta requiring the Attorney-General to conduct an audit into activities of KTDA.

The raid resulted in disruption of its services to the smallholder farmers.

The agency said it had restored the core system from alternative sources to working capacity and resume operations.

“The disruption has caused a delay in the processing of farmers’ payment for green leaf delivered in March 2021. Farmers usually receive these payments on or about the 24th of the following month. This has not been possible this month,” said the agency.

“Following the partial restoration of ICT services, processing of these and other obligatory payments is now in progress. We expect to complete and release green leaf payments to the farmers in the course of next week.”

The agency said green leaf collection and tea processing went uninterrupted during the period, alongside other farmer support services.

The KTDA has defended itself saying it had nothing to hide regarding its operations, financial transactions, and business.

“The group conducts legitimate business above board, facilitating its 620,000 farmers to process and sell their tea locally and in the world market,” said the agency.

The raid was also extended to the tea auction at the East African Tea Traders Association offices in Mombasa, on the same day last week, forcing the auction to postpone the trade that was to happen on Monday.

The tea auction resumed its activities on Tuesday.

The Mombasa auction normally runs two days a week, with the secondary auction conducted on Monday followed by the primary one on Tuesday.

2021-04-22 21:00:00


www.businessdailyafrica.com


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