President William Ruto has sounded a warning to a mining businessman who owes Ksh30 million to residents of Taita Taveta County.
Speaking during the launch of the Gemstone Value Addition and Marketing Centre in Voi on Friday, Ruto revealed that the businessman, only identified as Samruda, had not paid royalties to the residents for over four years.
According to Ruto, the businessman only managed to pay Ksh10 million, with a significant amount still unpaid. He, therefore, urged the tycoon’s friends, associates and acquaintances to encourage him to clear the debt.
Despite not spelling out any consequences for Samruda, Ruto emphasised that his administration would not tolerate any unscrupulous businessmen taking advantage of Kenyans to make millions.
President William Ruto gives a speech during the centenary anniversary of Limuru Girls High School, Kiambu County, on May 20, 2023.
“There is somebody called Samruda, and I hear he has Ksh30 million belonging to Kenyans. He has only brought Ksh30 million. I want his friends to go and tell him to bring the money belonging to the people of Taita Taveta.
“That is money that he should have brought here three years ago,” Ruto stated.
On the other hand, he cautioned mining companies against operating with expired licences.
Using his famous mambo ni matatu phrase, the President noted that over 1400 companies were directed to acquire requisite documents before continuing with their operations.
“We have people who have licences, and they have never renewed them for 10/20 years. We have 1400 who are doing that.
“We have given them time to renew their licences, and if they do not do so, mambo ni matatu,” he stated.
Notably, the affected companies were shut down on October 4 for carrying out unlawful operations.
Mining Cabinet Secretary Salim Mvurya explained that the companies contributed to an influx in smuggling and that their shutdown would ensure the industry is regulated.
Mining CS Salim Mvurya appears before the Senate Committee on Land, Environment and Natural Resources, on September 21, 2023.
Parliament of Kenya