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Oparanya unveils team to revive troubled sugar mill

Wednesday May 22 2019

Oparanya when he visited Mumias Sugar Company

Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya when he visited Mumias Sugar Company on May 22, 2019. PHOTO | SHABAN MAKOKHA | NATION MEDIA GROUP  

SHABAN MAKOKHA
By SHABAN MAKOKHA
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Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya has formed a committee to oversee the revival of the financially struggling Mumias Sugar Company, including managing the company assets.

This comes days after he said the county government would take over the operations of the factory.

Mr Oparanya Wednesday named a 12-member committee led by Trade, Tourism and Industrialisation executive Kassim Were and county Attorney Moses Sande.

The team has been mandated to oversee the management of the company’s nucleus estate farms, safeguard its assets and map out a revival plan that will be used to rejuvenate the grounded factory.

Other members of the committee include the county head of service delivery, the agriculture chief officer, four members of the county assembly, the deputy county secretary and two representatives from the miller, area police commander and deputy county commissioner.

However, Mumias Sugar acting MD Isaac Sheunda snubbed the meeting and the factory tour.

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He instead deployed heavy security personnel around the factory premises.

Mr Sheunda had earlier written to the governor asking him to postpone yesterday’s meeting, which the governor declined to do.

Journalists were barred from accessing the managerial guest house where the meeting took place by police officers.

Mr Oparanya last week vowed to “save” the troubled sugar miller from “unscrupulous management and the board of directors.”

Mr Oparanya co-chairs a task force that was appointed by the national government to look into issues bedevilling the sugar sector and make recommendations for the revival of the struggling industry.

The task force, whose other chair is Agriculture cabinet secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri, is yet to hand in its report to President Uhuru Kenyatta a month after its term expired on April 16.

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