Sugar factories in Kenya have for a long time struggled to revive, with mismanagement and lack of funds being pointed out as the main hurdle.
Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya has opened up on why these factories have been struggling all along.
The county chief who spoke spoke on Thursday at Bukura Agricultural Training Collage while meeting sugarcane farmers said efforts to revive the factories are hindered by cartels with selfish interests.
“They want to ensure the factories don’t revive. They want the industry dead so that they can continue smuggling cheap imports into the country,” he said.
He added that the cartels have been using their illegally acquired money to ensure revival efforts don’t succeed.
He revealed that these cartels are working with elected leaders to further their selfish interests at the expense of the industry and farmers.
Oparanya accused some local leaders of working with cartels to kill the local sugar sector.
He said that politics have contributed to the collapse of Mumias Sugar Factory and the government currently has no say in the management of the company after it was put under receivership.
He has urged members of the public to avoid electing leaders who have selfish interests.
Oparanya served as a co-chairman to a task force created by Uhuru Kenyatta to investigate what was ailing the sector and suggest solutions.