Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri Comes Clean on NCPB Saga

  • Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri on Tuesday delivered an extensive press briefing concerning delayed payments owed to maize farmers by the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB).

    Kiunjuri stated that he had a list of 152 people under investigation by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) and Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) over irregular payments.

    Connected traders, individuals and cartels colluded with senior state officials and were paid promptly for massive quantities of cheap, imported maize at the expense of local farmers, many of whom have still not yet been paid.

    Kiunjuri asserted that of the 152 individuals being probed, only two were paid during his time at the Agriculture ministry; Anthony Kipng'etich who was paid Sh8.2M & Isaiah Kipkemei who received Sh5.7M.

    "Investigations are still ongoing and we have been asked by EACC not to pay any person of interest," he stated.

    Explaining that the Ministry received and dispatched Sh1 billion in May and a similar amount in October, Kiunjuri claimed to have no knowledge of how the payments were made to cartels.

    "Ksh9,445,612,443 has been paid to farmers so far. This constitutes 86% of cash dispatched to NCPB.

    "The big question is who was paid? We raised the red flag and wrote to EACC and DCI to commence investigations," he maintained.

    Kinjuri admitted that President Uhuru Kenyatta was disappointed by the issue, with the President having recently been captured appearing to scold Kiunjuri after commenting on the NCPB fiasco at the Nairobi International Trade Fair.

    The CS, however, on Tuesday told off his 'haters' whom he promised to deal with in due time.

    "To my haters, I have listened to you carefully, even on social media. Some of you are politically frustrated.

    "You look for anything to make yourself relevant. I assure that when the right time and moment comes I will deal with you. I rest my case," he declared.