The Government has urged maize farmers from North Rift region to take advantage of the good prices being offered to sell their produce.
Head of Public Service, Felix Koskei, stated that farmers are hoarding maize in anticipation for higher prices thus creating a deficient of about 10 million bags.
Koskei said farmers should clear their stock so that when the government decides to import maize, no farmer will be affected.
The Chief of Staff noted that it is true that last season farmers incurred high production cost due to increase in fertilizer prices, adding that it should not be the main reason to hoard maize yet the produce is scarce.
“Millers are ready to buy your produce. I know you have maize in your stores. Let us sell and clear the stock for the next season. We have ready market and prices are good,” he said.
Farm gate prices have increased in the last weeks, with a 90kg bag retailing at Sh 5,000.
He assured farmers that the Kenya Kwanza government will work around the clock to ensure farmers get subsidized fertilizers on time to increase food production.
“We want our farmers to produce more maize in the coming season that’s why we are putting more focus on mechanization and farm inputs,” he said.
Koskei who was speaking at Kapsabet Bible College during the annual summit of African Inland Church, called upon politicians and church leaders to stop politicizing the maize issue.
He said plans are underway to register all farmers in the country to prevent cartels from taking advantage of subsidised fertilizer.
“We want the real farmers to benefit from this initiative not cartels. We want to know how many farmers we have, where they are and how best we can distribute the fertilizer,” he pointed out.
His sentiments were echoed by the Nandi Governor, Stephen Sang and Senator Samsom Cherargei, who said the government was more focused on improving the agriculture sector by providing subsidized fertilizer and farm inputs at affordable prices.
By Linet Wafula