KTDA boss Peter Kanyago voted after controversial 26 years in office


Chinga Tea Factory farmers in Nyeri photo
Chinga Tea Factory farmers in Nyeri

Chinga Tea Factory farmers in Nyeri have overwhelmingly voted out the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) national chairman Peter Kanyago after his 26-year reign.

In an election conducted at Chinga Social Hall grounds, with heavy police presence, the farmers rejoiced the ouster that was conveyed using the one man one vote policy that has been outlined in the Tea Act, 2020.

Previously, farmers were voting by the number of shares they own which was disadvantageous to them as only those with huge chunks of land were eligible to vote.

Mr Kanyago is among the longest-serving directors and he has been involved in hurting the tea industry.

Mr Kanyango was replaced by Mr Mark Mwangi who accumulated 235 votes versus his only opponent Ms Jane Wanjiku who amassed 27 votes.

Mr Kanyago did not attend the elections as the agency insists the election are illegal.

His ouster means he will have to step down as KTDA chairman. For one to be chairman at the national level, they have to be elected in the respective factory.

The move comes after High Court suspended an executive order issued by President Uhuru Kenyatta on March 13 which directed the Tea Board of Kenya to conduct elections in all Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) tea factories within 60 days.

KTDA had listed a case claiming that Agriculture CS Peter Munya had no powers to command for the polls as the tea agency is a private entity.

Mr Mwangi said that his first act as the director would be to analyse the value chain and offer solutions to problems ailing the sector.

“The elections were not illegal and we have been assured by our lawyers. It is a legal process and has continued peacefully,” he said.

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