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Gov’t to Write Off Debt Owed by Coffee Farmers, Gachagua Says 

The Government will write off debts owed by coffee farmers’ cooperative societies and unions as part of the intervention of revamping the sub-sector, Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua said on Tuesday.

The Deputy President also vowed to continue with his mission of Mt Kenya unity as various politicians commended his decision to embrace all leaders irrespective of their political affiliation.

Speaking at Kabare Village in Gichugu Constituency, Kirinyaga County, Mr Gachagua said he had spoken to President William Ruto about the write-off of the coffee farmers’ debts and the Head of State endorsed his proposal.

“Debts of Coffee Cooperatives, Unions and Saccos will be waived. I have spoken to the President and he has agreed that the same way debts for sugarcane farmers have been waived it will apply to coffee farmers. Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui (Ministry of Cooperatives and MSMES) has been instructed to prepare a memo to be presented to the Cabinet so that we can start afresh,” he stated.

The Deputy President added that the Ministry of Cooperatives will soon disburse to farmers, the second batch of the Cherry Fund at a rate of Sh40 per kilo. He emphasized that the Government is keen on supporting farmers to increase production and sales of the cherry.

Deputy President has been leading reforms in the Coffee, Tea and Dairy Sub-sectors for the small-scale farmer to earn more.

In his remarks, the Deputy President also said reforms in the tea sub-sector were bearing fruits and farmers’ income has increased.

He spoke during the funeral service of his former teacher at Kianyaga High School, Mwalimu Julius Kano Ndumbi, 73. Mr Ndumbi was the Principal of Kianyaga High School when the Deputy President was a student.

The Deputy President eulogised Mr Ndumbi as an educationist and disciplinarian, who loved and shaped lives of many young people. At the time of his death he was serving as a director at the National Irrigation Board.

“I have come to pay my respect to my teacher, mentor, friend and a great man who moulded us to be what we are today through mentorship and discipline. He has transformed many people into great men of great minds. He was a great teacher and could spot talents and support the same. He helped me to be a debater and the same came in handy during the national debate ahead of the 2022 elections,” said Mr Gachagua.

Narrating how he received the news of Mr Ndumbi’s demise, the Deputy President said he “was on seven days of fasting, prayers and meditating without phone or any distraction at Mt Kenya Forest, reflecting on the nation’s direction”.

At the event the Deputy President was in the company of various leaders including Senators Kamau Murango (Kirinyaga) and Veronica Maina (Nominated) and MPs Njeri Maina (Kirinyaga Woman Representative), Mary Wamaua (Maragua), Gachoki Gitari (Kirinyaga Central) and Ward Representatives led by Kirinyaga County Assembly Speaker Muteti Murimi.

Area MCA Dr Isaac Muriithi Mugo together with the County Government Executive Committee members and Kirinyaga County Jubilee Party chairman Muriithi wa Kang’ara were also present.

On the politics, Mr Gachagua vowed to continue with his resolve to unite the nation starting with the Mount Kenya region.

He said leaders attempting to divide region will not succeed.

“I made a decision, as the senior most elected leader in Mount Kenya region, to unite everyone irrespective of political affiliation. I am happy that the ordinary people at the grassroots are united. Only a section of leaders that are trying to divide the region, but they will not succeed,” he said.

Leaders accompanying the Deputy President commend his decision to work and embrace all leaders irrespective of their political affiliation.

“We urge the DP to remain focused and not to be distracted by political noisemakers; they do not want him to perform in his mandates. The DP has already succeeded in reforming key agriculture subsectors, eradicating illicit brews and drugs abuse and assisting President Ruto in driving the National Government,” said Maragua MP Mary Wamaua.

MP Gitari said: “As Mount Kenya leaders we are behind the Deputy President and President Ruto. There are detractors and we request that the DP to deny them attention”.

Jubilee politician Muriithi wa Kang’ara also commended the Deputy President for standing firm and working with all leaders including those allied to the Opposition outfits.

“The Deputy President is a hero and leader of the Mount Kenya community. We urge him to continue uniting the region and working with all leaders. As an elder, I will work with him in that exercise,” said Mr Kang’ara.

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