reports Leo Odera Omolo
THERE were circuses and near physical combat on Tuesday this week when a group of local land foreign investors toured the facility for the purpose of making assessment about its viability ahead of its privatization ,which is scheduled in two months time.
The investors were accompanied by the officials from NEMA, but they were confronted at the gate cf the facility by rowdy goons masquerading as local farmers and stakeholders who threatened to beat them up forcing the group to cut short and call off their mission.
It has since been established that a cartel of wealthy Kisumu based Indians with the vested interest in Miwani Sugar Mills had held a secret night meeting the with the goons previous night at undisclosed venue within Miwani and instructed the youth not to allow any other groups of potential investors to access the facility.
Mi9wani sugar Mills the oldest sugar factory in Kenya which was the first to be established in the country in 1927 by an Australian white settler farmer is currently closed. It went burst in 2001 and was placed under the joint official protective official receivership together with the Muhoroni Sugar MILLS by the government which is the sole shareholder.
The goons acting at the behest of their invisible hirer masters insisting that there should be no visit to the facility before it was advertised for privatization and were adamant not to allow any such visit. They also threatened to burn down the vehicles that conveyed the investors to the facility unless the owners made a quick about-turn.
Businessmen intending to make their bid for Miwani Sugar Mills are said to be very much scared after getting the information about the expected cut-throat competition involving the hiring of criminal thugs. \they have expressed the fear that unless the government moves much faster with speed and advertise when it plan to off-load its shares as all the five public owned sugar factories in Western Kenya the possibility of the exercise being sabotaged by the interested parties cannot be ruled out.
All the previous attempt to have Miwani sold to private entrepreneurs have always hit the snag. The attempts were followed with series of court cases filed on flimsy grounds deliberately to have the exercise time barred. When the cases were finally over and determined, some unnamed officials at the lands Ministry corruptly and deliberately withheld the facility’s land title deeds pre-empting the transactions.
The major source of all the commotions is the 10,000 hectares Miwani nucleus estate farm, which some wealthy cartel of RICH Indians tycoon based in Miwani and Kisumu have focused their attention and hell-bent grab through the hook or crook. These cartels of crooks have been putting all sorts of barriers on the path of Miwani Sugar Mll’s privatization, while its owner which is the government seemed to be toothless bull=dog on the issue.
The carcasses which erupted at the facility is the clear indication that something fishy is going on, which calls for the government action.