Workers at Mumias sugar company are now appealing to the government to make swift interventions to prevent the sugar mil from total collapse. Speaking in Mumias town in Kakamega, the workers under the Mumias sugar factory workers association, urged the government to honor its pledge of reviving the ailing factory.
Mummias sugar workers and farmers converged in Mumias town to raise their grievances to the head of state William Ruto about the poor condition of Mumias sugar company. Top on their agenda remains salary arrears amounting to two point three billion shillings, which they claim current manager Sarrai group has failed to settle.
They also want an immediate end to alleged hiring of foreigners and cane imports from Uganda. This is the second time in less than a month, that the workers and farmers are raising concern over operations at the factory.
•The workers also accused Sarrai group of allegedly importing workers from Uganda to work at the sugar miller, claims the star could not verify.
•The workers claimed that they had gone for months without pay despite reports of the Uganda-based company taking over operations at the sugar miller he workers claimed that they had gone for months without pay despite reports of the Uganda-based company taking over operations at the sugar miller.
“We want arrears to be paid immediately. We also want locals to be allowed to work in the company and Ugandans who were brought in be deported back to their country,” Patrick Mutimba, one of the workers, told the media in Kakamega during the protests.
Mutimba, the Mumias sugar company workers union chairman, said the company still owes workers sh2.3 billion. He said despite committing to clear the arrears through their official bid document, once it took over operations, the Ugandan-company is yet to do so.
“The few Kenyans working inside are working overtime and they are not being compensated,” he said.
The protests come two weeks after Sarrai group was blocked by appellate court from operating at the sugar mill. The gag order is until a case lodged against it is heard and determined.
The ruling meant Sarrai remained locked out of Mumias Sugar premises. The workers also accused Sarrai group of breaching agreement that would have seen former workers retained at the company, allegations the star could not also verify independently.
The workers and farmers also appealed to the government to honor its revival promise to the company before it completely collapse.
By Marion Wafula