Farmers eject leaders of Mutira Co-operative, Kirinyaga County takes over

An official at the Mutira Farmers Co-operative Society is being whisked out from a meeting that was held at the Mutitu coffee factory. Photo by Jane Mugambi

Over 1000 angry farmers affiliated to Mutira Farmers Co-operative Society have ejected the current leadership-handed it over to the county government of Kirinyaga during a Special General Meeting that was held on Thursday, June 27.

During the meeting, the election date was set to be on July 12 in all factories under the society.

The six factories are Kagumo, Mutitu, Mugaya, Karii, Kiangundu, and Kiamutuira.

The rejection of the management happened during SGM held at the Mutitu factory in Kirinyaga Central, Thursday braving the cold, drizzling weather to attend the meeting, they were in the factory as early as 8am. The meeting took 3 hours.

The meeting was conducted by the County Executive Member for Trade, Cooperatives, Tourism, Marketing, Industrialization Calbert Njeru and Executive Member for Agriculture Dr James Gachara and current leaders were in attendance.

Farmers raise hands in support of the ejection of current leadership

 

The management that was led by Francis Kamicha as the chair has been ejected out of office by farmers over embezzlement of funds.

Michael Kabuga said that farmers do not have faith with them after giving farmers a low payout despite their hard work.

The farmers chanted ‘they must go, they must go’ to an extent of removing them from the meeting.

Farmers have also given the county a go ahead and do audit that will give out the monies that has been embezzled during his tenure.

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“We do not have faith with the former leadership, as farmers we want new leaders,” said Kabuga.

Geoffrey Githinji, a farmer said under Kamicha’s leadership he took loans before the coffee rate was released.

He said from their statistics; they expected to get a KSh128 rate after three sales at the Nairobi Exchange but they were given a KSh52 rate-way low.

He accused them for acquiring loans without the authorization of farmers.

“We have ejected the current leadership, we do not want oppressors,” said Githinji.

Kamicha contacted said that,” I cannot comment or talk about it, the farmers have spoken and given their stand, the decision I have to accept. Executive Member for Cooperatives Calbert Njeru assured farmers of proper investigations.

According to the Cooperatives Act we have declared elections on July 12, 2024 in all factories under Mutira factories.

Farmers you brought an MoU, we are working on it, even our governor is making a follow up on it, the management has been given to the county government,” said Njeru.

Executive Member for Cooperatives Clabert Njeru

Mutira Ward MCA Kinyua Wangui and Youth Rep Bernard Gichangi said that all embezzled funds will be returned after auditing is done calling for patience.

“Farmers this is the day that you were waiting for, your word and voice has been heard. You have ejected the leaders who you feel failed you, the work left is for us as your representatives to ensure that your property, money is returned. Have faith in us,” said Gichangi.

By Jane Mugambi

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