Once upon a time, when miraa was banned in the UK and the tide for the people of Meru and the millions of Kenyans who depend on the crop were changing, President Kenyatta appointed a Miraa Task Force.
The Mandate of the Task Force was, to among others, consult with farmers, traders and relevant stakeholders, and suggest ways to ensure recovery of lost markets and search for new markets for miraa produce. We didn’t hear much of them, until today.
The Miraa Task Force at last published a timetable of public hearings yesterday! Very commendable, isn’t it?
Look at this:
We spoke to none other than Sakijo Munjuri, a major stakeholder in the miraa industry. You know him because he has been very vocal in the miraa matters especially these last few months. Sakijo is very skeptical about this notice, and he points out some issues that only a keen, engaged person will notice. Glaring mistakes that make you question the authenticity of this exercise in a time as bleak as this.
- The schedule runs beyond their term yet the President hasn’t extended its term as required (it was meant to run for three months from the 13th of June)
- A venue in Tigania Central called “Task Force Meeting” is hosting the Task Force on 15th September!
- Igembe South which has 90% of the Miraa affected by bans and negative politics has the least sessions and Tigania has so many sessions yet it has very little Miraa. Which Miraa is in Kunati, Miathene and Mbeu to be discussed?
- The main areas with heavy concentrations of traders and consumers especially Nairobi and Mombasa which are Miraa hubs are left out so these must travel to Maua to do presentations or write memoranda.
- Where is Maili Tatu in Tigania Central?
- And… what Constituency is Tigania Central in Meru County, or Kenya?
- How have we been sensitized about this exercise? This advert runs on 8th and we are all expected to read the Nation, abandon all our engagements and come to meet the Force?
Is this merely a PR push to justify exenditure/per diem by the task Force and powers that be?
We aren’t clear also why now when it has been idling in office for two and half months. We wait to see how their mandate especially securing markets will be deemed achieved in the one remaining week they have in office.
We wait to see this modus operandi.
Let’s take Miraa seriously for once.
We won’t add anything, but you can, in comments below.