Boardroom strife continues to plague KTDA

The push and pull at the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA ) has taken a new turn as former board members are said to have invaded a board meeting today, September 26.

In a press release to media houses, the company said, “Members of the previous board which was replaced last year today came to the boardroom at KTDA farmers building led by Peter Kanyago.”

The strife at KTDA is nothing new. In 2020, some tea farmers in central Kenya called for the disbandment of KTDA, after it failed to pay farmers their annual mini-bonus. Then President Uhuru Kenyatta decided to disband the board and called for its overhaul.

The board was then dissolved, and a new one assumed control in June 2021. The new board is led by David Muni Ichoho.

After a day-long crisis conference, their first move was to suspend six senior managers and demand a forensic audit of the operational and financial systems.

Lerionka Tiampati, KTDA CEO, Company Secretary John Omanga, Managing Director Alfred Njagi, Finance and Strategy Director Benson Ngari, General Manager ICT David Mbugua, and Head of Procurement and Logistics Brown Kanampiu are the six managers who have been placed on indefinite leave in order to facilitate the investigations.

The ousted board instantly asserted that it was still in charge and asked people to ignore the new team’s “illegitimate” acts.

It referenced the Constitutional Court of the High Court in Mombasa and Nairobi issuing conservatory orders prohibiting the election of directors of tea factories.

Today, the board once again asserted that all legal matters raised by Pater Kanyago are yet to be determined and David Ichho is in charge until the court pronounces itself.

“The former directors of the factories and former KTDA board members are persona non grata in all affiliated facilities,” the presser said.

KTDA is the largest tea business in East Africa and represents 60 percent of all Kenyan tea sales.

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