GPC Group Director Joe Kariuki Responds To Africa Uncensored Investigative Exposé ‘Fertile Deception’

GPC Group director Joe Kariuki
GPC Group director Joe Kariuki. [Photo/Handout]

Joe Kariuki, the director of the GPC Carbon Farming Group, which was recently put under the media spotlight over the quality of their farming products, has spoken out on the allegations made by investigative journalism company, Africa Uncensored.

Over the weekend, Africa Uncensored published a documentary titled ‘Fertile Deception’ done by investigative journalist Cynthia Gichiri in which they claimed that the GPC group had been producing and selling sub-standard fertilizer and distributing it via the National Cereals and Produce Board.

In the two-part documentary, Cynthia further claimed that Joe Kariuki appeared to have colluded with high-ranking government officials and top NCPB officials to defraud the public and sell a knockoff product, masquerading as fertilizer.

Kariuki has now responded to a report published by Africa Uncensored, calling out various inconsistencies in their investigation while also eruditing the actual purpose of the products produced by GPC and sold through the NCPB.

“The documentary they did was full of false narratives and inconsistencies. It was improperly researched and did not address facts,” Joe said.

“First and foremost, I did not supply fertilizer to the Cereals Board on a subsidy program. In fact, I paid Cereals Board myself to sell my products across the country via their stores. I wasn’t paid. I did the paying myself.”

While clarifying that he had not entered into any deal with NCPB’s government subsidies, Joe also added that his products were actually silica booster fertilisers and not regular fertilizers as claimed in the Africa Uncensored documentary.

“The investigative team did not have all their facts right. They wrongly claimed that I colluded with the then-minister for Agriculture Peter Munya and top officials in government to sell our fertilizer – which is a blatant lie and an obvious distortion of the truth,” he stated.

“Also, when they came to question me, I clearly told the team that we normally produce silica booster fertilizers. They did not even subject our products to a silica test in the laboratory. They only tested other things which silica boosters is not necessarily associated with,” he said.

Joe also revealed that his office had contacted two of the companies which Africa Uncensored used to test his fertilizer in an attempt to test the silica quotient in his products – but both rebuffed him, saying they did not offer such services.

“We reached out to Egerton and Cropnuts laboratories in an attempt to have them conduct silica tests for us too. Both institutions, which worked with Africa Uncensored in their report, turned us down saying they didn’t offer such services,” Joe revealed.

“This is despite Cropnuts having already agreed to the test, receiving advance pay from us and then backtracking on their earlier assurance, asking us to expect a refund.”

The GPC managing director also pointed out what he termed as more inconsistencies in the exposé, saying that it was improbable that two different laboratories in Kenya would yield strikingly different results on the same sample.

“It is very telling that at the Egerton laboratory, our potassium and nitrogen levels vary at a very high degree compared to the results collected at private laboratory Cropnuts. Our question is, who is fooling who?” Joe wondered.

In his final rebuttal, Joe also provided this company’s own findings after results from Spectralab, a research, testing and training facility, showed that the silica level in the GPC silica booster fertilizer was 53.58.

“I have shared the silica results with all the media outlets. How is it, then, that we have scored so highly after conducting our own research and test? Well, this indicates a shoddy job on the part of Africa Uncensored and also solidifies the original stance that we offer accredited soil booster fertilizer,” he concluded.

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