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State warn traders selling fake farm inputs

The government has issued a notice to deal firmly with owners of agro-vet outlets selling fake farm inputs.

Consequently, a multi-agency security team is already on high alert in Migori County and has swung in action to apprehend a number of cartels selling substandard fertilisers and seed to local farmers.

The team, from Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS), Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS), the Police, the office of the County Commissioner and, Ministries of Agriculture and health, has been conducting a shop to shop inspections to find out and arrest those perpetrating the illegal

The move comes in the wake of heightened complaints from farmers about fake fertilisers and seeds in circulation within the region and the Country at large.

Head of the security team David Gitonga, who is also the area County Commissioner warned of severe punishment to those who would be nabbed with the said fake farm inputs.

Anybody out to compromise efforts made in attaining food security in the region would not be tolerated, according to Gitonga.

But speaking on phone from Kamagambo areas of Rongo Sub-County within Migori County, John Okello a famous Maize farmer, accused some of senior government officers of working with the cartels in fake fertilizer and seeds circulation in the Country.

“We cannot believe that the Government systems have collapsed to the point of allowing Kenyan markets to be flooded with fake and expired goods at times,” said Okello.

He told those working at KEBS to adhere to the country’s laws governing the quality of goods and especially food in order to protect the lives of the citizens from the dirty tricks of the unscrupulous business people.

“These office and other relevant authorities must strictly enforce the existing laws regarding the standards and qualities of goods to protect Kenyans,” he said.

The multi-agency security team however cautioned wananchi to be vigilant and report any suspected person trading on counterfeit goods in the region

We are requesting all residents to be keen enough with the fertilizers and seeds they buy from agro-vet shops by sending identification codes printed on the packets and bags to relevant numbers to know whether what they have bought are genuine,” said the County Commissioner.

By George Agimba

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