, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 6 – Small scale tea farmers affiliated to factories managed by Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) will on Tuesday go to the polls to elect new directors of their tea factories.
The annual elections will be conducted in 54 tea factories across the country, each of which will elect two of its six directors after the expiry of their three-year term in office. KTDA directors retire on rotation every year.
The exercise will be conducted through the secret ballot system in polling stations set up at tea buying centres.
The voters, who must be tea farmers, are expected to carry with them their national identification cards or passports to be allowed to vote.
According to KTDA Company Secretary, Ken Omanga, farmers will also be required to carry their August, September, October or November 2013 payslips or their founder share certificates.
Omanga said the voting arrangements have been finalised adding that returning, presiding and other support officers have been recruited.
“The ballot papers, boxes and posters have been dispatched upcountry awaiting the election tomorrow. So far, candidates have conducted campaigns in a civil manner, and we expect them to maintain such decorum until tomorrow evening, when results will be announced,” Omanga said.
While most candidates spent sleepless night strategising on how to capture the seats, some of the candidates have already sailed through unopposed.
According to KTDA Company Act, a candidate must be a tea farmer to vie for the post with those who have held the position previously also being eligible for re-election.
KTDA has more than more than 560,000 small-scale tea farmers who are expected to participate in the voting.