Kenya Power bosses derailing reforms warned as committee begins work

Top Kenya Power managers with intentions to derail presidential directive to reform the troubled utility firm have been warned against the move as the Steering Committee on Implementation of the Presidential Task Force on Review of Power Purchase Agreements Report begins work.

While officiating the first sitting of the committee whose six months timeline commenced on Wednesday, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi said consumers should expect power bills to drop by a huge margin by the end of December this year.

This comes as the state-owned utility firm is classified as a special state project in a bid to streamline the power pricing and distribution mechanisms at the utility firm.

“In the coming days you will see significant changes in the sector, significant change in the cost of fuel, cost of power and streamlining and bringing grater efficiency in the manner in which these organization work. It has become necessary to do this so as to address strategic objective in developing our country,” said CS Matiang’i.

Matiang’i said the government on Tuesday had an engagement with envoys from countries where the Independent Power Producers (IPPs) which entered a Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) with Kenya Power are based with a view to renegotiate the tariffs.

“The government’s focus is to bring down the cost of power by addressing challenges that result in costs to consumers. We are starting with an immediate aggressive review of Kenya Power billing system, suspension of ongoing and pending negotiations with Independent Power Producers while we review existing agreements. Fuel prices are already under assessment and Wananchi will see the results in the next price review as we have addressed key systemic challenges,” he added through his official twitter account @FredMatiangi.

Energy Cabinet Secretary Monica Juma said major procurement at the utility firm will be subject to board approval as well as the availability of funds.

“All stakeholders are on board and the ministry will take the lead in making sure that this implementation is done timeously and the effect of it are felt by the Republic of Kenya citizens,” said CS Juma.

The general supervision of the implementation of the report will be done by a cabinet committee chaired by CS Matiangi during the six month period where cost of power is expected to drop by at least 33%.

The Presidential Taskforce on Review of Power Purchase Agreements was constituted in March this year in response to concerns on the high cost of electricity for both individual consumers and businesses.

  

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