By Claire Wanja
A man has been fined Sh5 million by a Bungoma court for carrying out illegal electricity connection, boosting Kenya Power’s efforts to track down theft of electricity.
Geoffrey Kiberenge was arrested in Bungoma on Friday last week and booked in Bungoma Police Station before appearing in court. He will serve a 10 year imprisonment in default of the fine.
Elsewhere in Coast, two suspects; Nathan Wasike and Paul Akuto Okech were arrested in Likoni yesterday for being in possession of KPLC labelled climbing irons. They were booked in at Likoni Police post and are expected to appear in Mombasa law courts.
In Ruaraka, Jacob Abade Anywaya was arrested for impersonating Kenya Power staff and engaging in unauthorized electricity connection exercise.
The suspect has been linked to a number of unauthorized connections and retrofitting of meters in Roysambu, Githurai 44/45, Eastern Bypass and other areas within Ruiru. A fake staff ID card, KPLC branded twist seals, clamp meter and an inspection report booklet were recovered from the suspect.
In the last two weeks, 60 people have been arrested countrywide and charged in court for various offences, mostly illegal connections, following concerted efforts by Kenya Power security personnel to crack down illegal connections, unauthorized reconnections, vandalism and theft of electricity.
“Illegal connections undermine the reliability of power supply as they overload the distribution network and result in unplanned outages and may cause injury or death,” Kenya Power MD & CEO Dr. Ben Chumo said .
“In addition, victims of such exercises are exposed to unsafe electricity connections and suffer financial losses once the illegal lines are discovered and destroyed”.
“We urge our customers to make all payments for electricity connection at the Company’s offices, request for reconnection after disconnection and report any suspicious activity to our nearest offices, to the police and provincial administration,” Dr Chumo said.