Sugar millers operating in Kakamega county have singled out high taxes, levies and middlemen on sugar production as the drawbacks to revenue collection and self-sustainability in their operations.
This was revealed by the Assembly Committee on Finance and Economic Planning during a fact-finding and oversight visit at Butali and West Kenya Sugar Mills in the course of the week.
Led by Kholera Ward Member of County Assembly (MCA) Hon. Bonface Osanga, the Committee was out to ascertain the Millers’ find out revenue generating streams and ascertain their self-reliance in sugar production. According to the officials at the Millers, heavy taxation has led to delays in payment of farmers and other service providers thus leading to the piling debts.
West Kenya administrative officer Mr. Pratap Keshwala urged county legislators to intervene by regulating taxes, levies and rates.

The officer however, noted that the company was working around the clock to improve revenue collection by constructing a power generating plant that will see the factory add 12 megawatts of electricity to national grid.

Mr. Keshwala added that if the project succeeds, it will help the firm generate electricity besides sugar and generate more revenue.

It was also observed by the Committee that middlemen in the industry were doing a lot of injustice to farmers who would have earned more from their harvests were it that they (farmers) were dealing directly with millers, an observation that the management said was being addressed with the urgency it deserved.

The factories were however advised to keep paying land rates to the county government in order to avoid penalties that could affect their operations negatively.