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I bought ‘contraband sugar’ from Kabras company – Eastleigh trader

West Kenya Sugar Company and Eastleigh-based Diamond Wholesalers Thursday traded blame over the origin of 1,200 tonnes of contraband sugar seized at the latter’s warehouse.

While appearing before a joint committee of Parliament, West Kenya termed the Kabras branded sugar as “fake,” but Diamond Wholesalers claimed it bought the impounded sweetener from West Kenya.

Kabras brand is produced by West Kenya, which has distanced itself from the packages seized in the police swoop.

Jaswant Sing Rai, the chairman of West Kenya and his managing director Tejveer Rai told MPs that the sugar was not packaged by their firm.

But Mr Ahmed Sheikh Mohamed, the second-largest shareholder of Diamond Wholesalers was adamant that he purchased it from West Kenya.

“Yes my sugar was detained. I bought (it) from importers. I bought it from a company known as Land Mark. I bought the sugar that was found in packets of one or two kilogrammes from Kabras.

‘I HAVE RECEIPTS’

“I have receipts and delivery notes that I will table,” he told the joint committee investigating importation of contraband sugar, which is also said to have been contaminated with copper and mercury.

Mr Rai and Mr Ahmed were testifying separately before the Agriculture and Trade committee.

Mr Jaswant said the Rai Group applied to the Sugar Directorate at the Ministry of Agriculture to import bulk brown sugar to address shortfall the country faced in 2017.

“All this sugar was duly licensed by the sugar directorate and received pre-shipment verification from Kenya Bureau of Standards.

“Of the contraband sugar that has been impounded, none has been imported by Rai Group,” Mr Rai told MPs.