ECONOMIC CRIME

Kenya Power moves to curb illegal connections

The company has rolled out a crackdown on illegal connections in Nairobi, a campaign that will be expanded countrywide.

In Summary

•Kenya Power CEO Bernard Ngugi says illegal power connections pose a danger of electrocution not just to the beneficiary but the public at large. It also the company  revenues.

•Theft and vandalism of electricity supply equipment is an economic crime under the Energy Act with minimum fines Sh5 million or imprisonment of 10 years or both.

Electricity pole with wire connection from it to different houses in Mukuru Kwa Reuben slums. PHOTO/COLLINS KWEYU
Electricity pole with wire connection from it to different houses in Mukuru Kwa Reuben slums. PHOTO/COLLINS KWEYU

Kenya Power has rolled out a countrywide campaign to weed out illegal connections and curb theft of electricity.

The campaign which began on Thursday at Imara Daima Estate in Nairobi, was jointly conducted by Kenya Power staff and security agencies including the police and Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) officers.

The crackdown comes about two months after the company rolled out the ‘Know Your Meter’ initiative that is meant to increase customer satisfaction, ensure public safety and enhance its revenue protection initiatives.

Among the outcomes of the campaign so far is that, while Kenya Power customers are enjoying access to legally connected electricity, other individuals have opted to engage in criminal activities.

This, the company says undermines the quality of power supply such as illegal power connections, theft of power and vandalism of electricity supply equipment among others.

The operation is meant to address these vices and mark a new dawn into how we will conduct our business moving forward.  Our main focus is to ensure all power connections to our customers are safe and that the power is provided as required by law,"CEO Bernard Ngugi said.

"We will do this through identification of the sources of illegal connections, discontinue these supplies and thereafter install lawful supplies that the customers can enjoy," he added.

According to management, the company will intensify these crackdowns not just in Nairobi but the rest of the country.

Ngugi said illegal power connections pose a danger of electrocution not just to the beneficiary but the public at large adding that such present a loophole for revenue loss to the Company. 

I would like to urge members of the public to follow the right procedure to apply and pay for electricity connection and desist from any illegal connections. It is a criminal offence to steal electricity, tamper with meters or engage in illegal connections," he said.

Illegal connections are also unsafe as they are not subjected to the required standards and may cause harm or fatalities.

Additionally theft and vandalism of electricity supply equipment is an economic crime under the Energy Act with minimum fines Sh5 million or imprisonment of 10 years or both on conviction.

 Company is working closely with investigating agencies to unmask persons involved in illegal activities with the aim of prosecuting them in court as provided by law.