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Economy

Nzoia Sugar to pay its cane growers Sh579m

Joash Wamang’oli
Nzoia Sugar Company chairman Joash Wamang’oli. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The cash-strapped Nzoia Sugar Company has received Sh579 million to pay farmers for the 2017/18 sugar cane deliveries, the miller has said.

Board chairman Joash Wamang’oli urged the farmers to re-activate their bank accounts “in readiness for the payments to be made this week”.

Last week, Deputy President William Ruto announced that at least Sh2.7 billion would be released directly to sugarcane farmers to avoid misuse by millers.

“Following the development, the company would wish to urge all farmers to activate their accounts to avoid inconsistency since the ministry will make the payments directly to their accounts,” said Mr Wamang’oli.

The Bungoma-based company owes 17,269 contracted farmers about Sh579.8 million for cane deliveries made between November 2017 and October 2018. Nzoia Sugar pays farmers Sh3,800 per metric tonne of cane delivered.

Mr Wamang’oli asked cane farmers to be patient and check their accounts tomorrow or next Monday.

He said the pay would enable farmers to meet basic needs as well as take their children to school and prepare their farms ahead of the planting season.

“As a company, we are grateful to the government for releasing the Sh579 million, which will be paid directly to farmers’ bank accounts.

“It is now clear that the sugar sector is changing and we can see brighter days ahead,” said Mr Wamang’oli.

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