EACC begins lifestyle audit for Kenya Power employees

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The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has begun a lifestyle audit for Kenya Power employees, a move seen at weeding out fraudulence at the power distributor.

The exercise begins with the executive then it shall be drawn down to junior staff.

EACC will verify the wealth immersed by each employee including contractors sourced to do business with Kenya Power.

KPLC’s interim Managing Director Rosemary Oduor held a meeting with the staff and assured them of fairness during the exercise. It is, however, not known when the exercise would last.

According to a Business Daily report, the Kenya Electrical Trades and Allied Workers Union (KETAWU), which represents Kenya Power workers, confirmed the commencement of the lifestyle audit and urged for impartiality.

“We fully support the lifestyle audit and urge management to remain fair as it promised. Everyone should be open to scrutiny,” said KETAWU Secretary General Ernest Nadome, when he spoke to BD.

The audit comes at a time when significant reforms are being recommended at the power utility, following President Uhuru Kenyatta’s recent move to appoint a taskforce team to look into what is ailing Kenya Power.

According to Energy Cabinet Secretary Monica Juma, some of the reforms tabled are meant to reduce tariffs for industries and domestic consumers while protecting the environment.

This follows public outcry from power consumers, businesses and individual Kenyans regarding the high cost of power supplied by Kenya Power compared to the cost in the neighboring countries.

The task force recommended that all Kenya Power employees be vetted afresh for integrity, suitability, and qualification for the jobs they hold.

“Use wealth declarations to verify unexplained wealth and this should be initiated through the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to secure assurance of this value ideal,” the task force said, adding that the firm should introduce a shift system to rationalise its staff numbers.

Internal woes at the company saw the unceremonious exit of Benard Ngugi. Ngugi was the Managing Director for the firm who assumed reign in October last year.

The company which enjoys a monopoly in the country has been on the loss-making edge in recent years, despite its potential for profitability.

Kenya Power announced a 92.1 percent profit drop in the year to June 30, 2019, to Ksh.262 million down from Ksh3.268 billion the previous year.

For the year ended, June 2020, the power utility posted a net loss of Ksh.2.98 billion, its record loss in 17 years.

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Lawrence Baraza is a prolific writer with competencies in Digital Media, Print, and Broadcast. Baraza is also a Communication Practitioner currently spearheading Digital content on Metropol TV's Digital Desk.

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