The Government will issue license to Busia Sugar Factory to start its operations within a week, Deputy President William Ruto has said.
This will effectively bring to an end the long wait for cane farmers who have had to incur unnecessary costs of transporting their produce to neighbouring counties.
Speaking after inspection of the factory which was preceded by commissioning of the administration block, the DP said BSI will be issued with a license in a week’s time which will enable it start normal operations within a month.
“I have instructed the Ministry of Agriculture and others concerned to issue a licence to the factory to start operations by next week,” said Ruto.
The DP said the factory is at the heart of the Jubilee Government manifesto because it addresses one of the big four agenda of manufacturing and value addition , adding that the factory will create direct employment to over 1000 Kenyans and a further 18000 farmers will benefit from the Sh5billion investment.
Ruto who was accompanied by Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong, Deputy Governor Moses Mulomi, Company MD Ali Taib and; MPs Oscar Sudi, Raphael Wanjala and former Teso South MP Mary Emaase blamed corruption and impunity for the delay that has seen the factory non-operational for the last five years.
The DP wondered why the license was not issued to the company five years down the line despite the management meeting all the necessary requirements including installing the modern machines.
“Corruption and impunity shall have no place in the management of public affairs in Kenya. It’s unacceptable for one to put such an investment worth Sh5bllion, only to be blocked by corrupt individuals through court injunctions,” he said.
Governor Ojaamong asked the national government to review its investment policy by removing the long and bureaucratic clearance procedures which discourage potential investors from doing business in Kenya.
Ojaamong noted that county residents stand to benefit once the factory begins its operations. “There are plans to introduce early maturing cane species which will enable farmers harvest their cane within nine months and this will boost local economy.
The Deputy Governor on his part appealed to the national government to extend the infrastructure agenda to Busia by expanding the Kisumu-Busia highway which connects the country with the Great Lakes region.