By D D
I read ODM statement on boycott- and I am a good reader- and never came across the word Brookside.
The sugar deal with Uganda was signed in exchange of ‘Milk’ and ‘Meat’ from Kenya.
Because this country’s meat production cannot even satisfy local consumption; and a parliamentary committee found out that part of that meat comes from cattle rustling, it was put in the details to hoodwink us.
Which leaves us with Milk.
Now, Kenya doesn’t produce Milk too. Milk economy is foremost a one family business and, to a small extent, a one community business.
Mt. Kenya doesn’t grow sugar. It’s economy is not dependent on it. No child goes to school on sugar proceeds. No sick is treated with sugar proceeds. No family is wealthy because of their sugar farming.
But in every home in Mt. Kenya there is a dairy cow. Almost each home is a member of a milk cooperative.
The Uganda deal isn’t just an Uhuru Kenyatta Brookside Milk deal but a deal which touches each home in Mt. Kenya region.
Because we share this country with Kikuyus, we must wish them well; even if our wishes come at the high cost of our sugar.
That a people can base their economic survival on the destruction of economic livelihoods of others, and, unashamedly, act as if nothing happened, is what will lead to new conflicts here at home.
Uhuru milk deal is a hugely popular deal in Mt. Kenya. This is why: For every home in Mt. Kenya, there is a grade cow.
Each home sells milk to the many cooperatives, and Brookside and now will sell milk to a new market -Uganda.
That means high production. That means high profits. That means with dwindling coffee and tea; milk is the new gold.
And with the historical selfishness of the kikuyu, to tell them that you are opposing this good initiative by their loving president because of your dying sugar sector (when that sugar is also more expensive than Uganda sugar) is to be an economic saboteur of their community. This is what the debate was like yesterday in Kameme and other radio stations of Mt. Kenya.
The deal is simple: Our Milk and your cheap sugar. Western Kenya people can go hug a transformer.
So to oppose it as benefiting Kenyatta family alone is to miss the ethnic angle of its economic ramifications.
Counties like Murang’a have invested massively in commercial milk production which will make it hugely benefit from any new milk market.
In essence, Brookside (Uhuru) signed the deal with Uganda purely for market reasons. It was already facing stiff competition here and needed new markets.
There was a market in Nigeria but with Buhari defeating Uhuru’s friend Jonathan, and his war on corruption, which has led to the establishment of a commission to look into bad deals Jonathan signed across the world and decide which ones to do away with, that market seems to have been abandoned.
There was a deal. There was no deal. Uganda sugar already here; soon Mt. Kenya milk will be in Uganda shelves and we will have to accept and move on.
In some other way, without appearing to sabotage Kikuyu peoples’ milk; we must find away of keeping our sugar industry afloat. The big lesson in this ongoing milk saga is just how far we are from nationhood.