- The governor said the people and leaders of Bomet and Kericho counties should work together towards finding a lasting solution.
- The county chief said that one of their agendas is to resurvey the land owned by the multinational companies.
Bomet Governor Hillary Barchok has blamed politicians for using the current multi-national tea crisis to seek sympathy from the public.
Without naming any leaders, Barchok said it was wrong for politicians to mobilise people to cause the destruction of tea companies' machinery in the name of seeking their rights.
Speaking to the media at the county headquarters on Wednesday, Barchok said there are better ways of addressing their grievances.
“We are condemning with strongest terms possible the violence that erupted on Monday at Brooke town in Kericho and led to the torching of tea plucking machines,” Barchok said.
Barchok said the current tea crisis, if not tamed, will spill to other sectors.
“If this move is left unchecked, investors who are willing to invest in the country will shy off citing insecurity and invasion of private properties," h said.
The governor said the people and leaders of Bomet and Kericho counties should work together towards finding a lasting solution.
“In such matters, let's address the issues as the local leadership by not dragging President William Ruto who has been tirelessly looking for investors and partners to restore our economy,” Barchok said.
He said that even though there are legitimate claims on the matter, there is also a way of addressing the challenges.
“It is true we are experiencing tough economic times but that should not make us engage in unlawfulness,” Barchok said.
He defended his move to be silent on the issue saying that he has been pursuing the matter in a civilized way.
“It is sad that some leaders have been branding me a sell-out and that it is not the situation because as a county we have been pursuing the rights of the people without making loud noises,” he said.
The county chief said that one of their agendas is to resurvey the land owned by the multinational companies.
He added that the 15 per cent allocated to the Kipsigis community in the sell-out of business between James Finlay and Brown company is a clear indication that better things for residents.
“We should know that the land is ours but the business is theirs and as leaders will not encourage people to engage in criminal activities but use the right channel to seek justice,” he said.
Similar sentiments were echoed by Bomet county assembly majority leader Paul Kirui, who said that they formed a task force to look into the matter and urged the people to be patient.
He also said once the resurvey of land is completed it will help generate more revenue for the county government.