Home Court News MIRAA traders demand Sh 100m refund from KAA and CS Roads.

MIRAA traders demand Sh 100m refund from KAA and CS Roads.

by Robert Guyana

Justice Chacha Mwita has certified urgent a petition by Nyambene Miraa Trader Association seeking refund of 100Million levied to MIRAA Cargo Vans entering JKIA from 2022.

Through Lawyer Henry Kurauka, the association petitioned the court to grant an injunction to stop the Respondents from levying illegal charges and an order to refund 100 million so far collected illegal and ultra vires.

The petition is coming up for highlighting submissions on 27/6/24.

Through Lawyer Henry Kurauka says that the petitioners are members and residents of Miraa growing areas depend on Miraa farming and trade for their livelihood and source of income to cater for food, school fees, clothing, water, medical expenses, housing, social amenities and it is a foreign currency eamer for Kenya.

The Petitioner avers that Miraa has a unique cultural value such as forming integral part during payment of dowry during Ameru marriages, promotes unity, passage rites, promoting peaceful co-existence, dispute resolutions among council of elders of Ameru, leisure, sports, social amenities, recreation, leisure, relaxation, maintaining green energy and ecosystem.

The Traders says that Miraa is medicinal as its chewers have less risk of contracting high blood pressure, diabetes, cancerous cells and boosts alertness, wellness and brain performance of consumers.

“Miraa crop is scientifically classified as a mild stimulant just like coffee and tea which has no medical implications for consumption,” reads the court papers.

The traders say that the CS have gravely offended Article 27 of the constitution, which guarantees the petitioner the right of equality and freedom from discrimination.

“The rights of the petitioner and its members Under Articles 10 and 40 have been gravely violated by the respondents, “added Kurauka.

Kurauka says that the respondents have or are likely to further infringe the legal and constitutional provisions outlined hereinafter.

He adds that the respondents have charged Miraa farmers and traders about 100 Million since July, 2022 without any Jurisdiction and participation of stakeholders such as farmers, traders and consumers.

Additionally, the petitioners state that the Miraa sub-sector has greatly empowered other inter-related sub-sectors such as agricultural & commercial and improved government revenue through licenses and taxes.

“Miraa sub-sector is the economic mainstay of farmers, traders, employees and other stakeholders mainly in Meru County and Embu County. The petitioner has created employment, ”Kurauka says.

Nyamita further states that its members who are Miraa traders, consumers and farmers have been consuming Miraa for decades without any medical and or social adverse effects.

“There is no reported medical condition that is solely attributed to Khat consumption. There are no rehabilitation centers for Miraa users. There are no fatal cases arising from Miraa consumption,” the petitioners say in their papers.

They avers that the government has not made any effort to seek and involve farmers, traders, consumers and stakeholders on export of Miraa and levies that affects their income, lives and livelihood.

“CS Transport’s action is against the government’s manifesto to reduce poverty and lower the cost of living. There is no national interest, threat and inconvenience to bar Miraa export, trading, marketing and consumption without charging outrageous charges,” the petitioners state.

“Petitioner and members of the public stand to suffer irreparable loss and great inconvenience if the respondents are allowed to continue Implementing their decision to levy punitive and oppressive and outrageous levies without legislative mechanisms and participation,” they add.

According to the petitioners, the government has failed and or refused to address their demands despite several meetings thereof.

“We have been forced to seek the intervention of the Court on the matter of the illegal charge of Ksh 4000 per vehicle entering JKIA with Miraa cargo by Kenya Airports Authority.

We have had several meetings with KAA management including one attended by our MPs Hon Dan Kiili (Igembe Central), Hon. John Paul (Igembe South), TJ (Igembe North, Mpuru (Tigania East) and Senator Kathuri Murungi (Meru County), line government agencies and us Miraa industry stakeholders where this specific matter has been discussed but still 2 years afterwards, KAA continues charging us,” Kimathi says

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