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Why Karuturi flower farm workers are an unhappy lot

By Antony Gitonga
[Photo: File]

NAIVASHA, KENYA: Four years after the world leading producer of roses was closed down and put under a receiver manager, over 2,500 former workers of Naivasha based Karuturi flower farm are yet to get their dues.

Since then, tens of their school going children have dropped from school and prostitution has become the order of the day around the area that was once the hub of business.

The workers have now petitioned the Chief Justice to intervene over a case pending in the High Court which has remained unresolved for years further worsening their services.

Addressing the press outside their dilapidated houses, the workers told of their harrowing experiences as they wait for the dues estimated to be over Sh200 million.

According to their leader Samson Auda, for two years a case to determine their fate lay in the court with no logical explanation being given for various adjournments.

 “We are appealing to the CJ to intervene so that we can get justice and know our final fate as the suffering is now unbearable,” he said.

Ouda who is also the farm’s Chief Shop-steward lashed out at CFC Bank which took over the farm for selling some assets of the farm against a court order.

He claimed that the bank has started selling assets of the farm and that if this does not stop, the ex-workers shall also move in and get part of the property to off-set debts.

Standard could not independently verify claims on the bank

He said that in the period that the farm closed, students had dropped from school as the parents could no longer afford to pay for their school fees.

Another worker Wycliffe Laini called on the former owner Ram Karuturi to take over the farm so that he could clear his debts and pay workers their dues.

He said that in the period, some of the workers had died while others had been reduced to paupers as they sought justice.

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