, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 5 – The High Court has issued orders restraining the National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (Nacada) from imposing Miraa consumption hours pending the hearing and determination of a suit filed against it.
The case was filed by the Kenya Miraa Farmers and Traders Association which accused Nacada of unlawfully purporting to regulate consumption of Miraa.
The association has accused Nacada of restricting consumption of Miraa to between 5pm and 10 pm without any basis and participation of all stakeholders. According to the petitioner, Nacada has no legal mandate to restrict time for Miraa consumption without first consulting farmers, traders and consumers.
They have further accused Nacada of continuing to sponsor and spearhead negative campaign through publications, media, social events and seminar about Miraa.
“The action by the respondents has adversely affected marketing and income from Miraa because their campaign caused countries like the UK to implement a legislation that banned Miraa sale and consumption,’’ they argue.
The petitioner contends that Miraa should not have timelines for consumption since it is scientifically classified as a mild stimulant like coffee and tea.
Recently, the National Assembly passed an amendment to include Miraa in the schedule of cash crops in Kenya. The amendment is awaiting the approval of the Senate and thereafter Presidential assent.
Currently, there is no law that prohibits production, sale and consumption of Miraa in Kenya.
Consequently, the petitioner wants the High Court to declare that the decision by Nacada to regulate consumption of Miraa without a legislative mechanism and participation of all stakeholders as illegal.