Africa's Development

Kenya’s plan to privatize five sugar companies gets court backing

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 13 – Kenya’s plan to privatize five sugar companies in Western Kenya will now proceed to high court dismissed an application to stop the process.

The application filed by two politicians from the opposition was thrown out for for failing to exhaust dispute resolution mechanisms between the national and County government within the remedies provided for in the Constitution.

The two politicians include Kisumu Governor Anyang Nyong’o and former Gem MP Jakoyo Midiwo.

The two sought to have the privatisation stopped claiming the sale process was being conducted illegally, following an advertisement in the local dailies on March 11 2016.

“I find that the proceedings before the court are premature since all the mechanisms to resolve the dispute have not been exhausted,” Judge Edward Muriithi ruled.

According to JusticeMuriithi, asking the court to intervene would be usurping the power of organs with the mandate to do so under the Intergovernmental Relations Act.

The judge noted that the alternative dispute resolution efforts ended after it was agreed that the issue should be referred to the appropriate Intergovernmental Relations Committee.

Through their lawyer, the two accused the Privatization Commission of ignoring mandatory conditions and material procedure for the process .

They had also contended that issues raised by cane farmers had not been addressed.

In May 2015, Kenya approved the sale of the government’s stake in Nzoia, South Nyanza, Chemelil, Muhoroni and Miwani sugar.

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