Farmers Raise Alarm Over Cons Using Fake Cheques

Bags of maize at an NCPB depot.
Bags of maize at an NCPB depot.

Farmers in Uasin Gishu and Trans Nzoia counties decried an active maize syndicate conning them thousands of harvested maize worth millions of shillings.

The farmers in the counties raised the alarm to the area chiefs and police but the suspects were still on the loose. 

One such victim of the fraud -a 62-year-old maize farmer - revealed how the cons manipulated methods of payment to rob unsuspecting farmers of their hard-earned harvests. 

Undated image of maize stored in a warehouse
Undated image of maize stored in a warehouse

“Two men came here on Friday, January 13, and told me they wanted to buy maize. I had many remaining from my previous harvest so I thought I had gotten lucky,’ the farmer narrated.

The farmer stated that the two men issued him with a cheque as payment for the bags of maize but days later, he was notified by the bank that the check was a fake.

Speaking to Citizen TV, the 62-year-old farmer indicated that he lost bags of maize worth Ksh660,000 to the two individuals.

“We agreed that they would transfer the money to my bank account. After receiving a message of confirmation, I gave them the maize. 

When I went to withdraw money from my account, I was notified that the money was not transferred. I lost too much,” the distraught farmer explained.

Like other victims before him, the 62-year-old reported the incident to the police but the men were not apprehended.

“I helped them load the maize in the lorry so I noted down the vehicle's registration number and reported the incident to the police. The police already have their information but have not arrested them, ” the farmer stated.

Wilson Simba, Moi’s Bridge Chief confirmed the incident stating that many farmers in the area fell prey to the fraudsters, adding that other farmers were tricked to get their checks from the city center only to realise that all their bags of maize were stolen. 

“We have the food from our harvest but they are not selling. We don't know how to dispose of or give them away. So when someone comes to buy, we quickly accept their offer,” another farmer lamented.

The victims demanded that the government brings the suspects, who have been running the operation for a long period of time, to justice, adding that they had already lost too much.

Bags of maize at a warehouse
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