Yester-evening, Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) Board of management members were coerced to resign as a new one is set to be constituted.
Sources privy to States dealings who spoke to Kenyan Bulletin said the KPLC board members were asked by President Uhuru Kenyatta to tender their resignation.
A new board is expected to be constituted by the end of the month to fill the void left by the outgoing board.
The board consists of the chairman Mr Mahboub Maalim who was appointed in 2018, Mrs Brenda Kokoi, Mr Kairo Thuo, Mr Wilson Mugung’ei, Mr Adil Khawaja, Mrs Beatrice Gathirwa and Eng Isaac Kiva.
Others who have been kicked out include Zipporah Kering and Imelda Bore.
In a statement, Kenya Power announced that the board members had resigned, without stating the reasons.
“The Board of Directors of the Kenya Power and Lighting Company PLC hereby announces the resignation of Mr. Adil Khawaja, Mr. Kairo Thuo, Mr. Wilson Kimutai Mugung’ei, Mrs. Brenda Kokoi and Hon. Zipporah Kering as Independent Directors. The Company would like to sincerely thank the Directors for their commitment and dedicated service, and wishes them the best in their future endeavours,” announced Kenya Power.
Kenya Power last month said it expects its full-year earnings to drop by at least 25 per cent, a sixteen-year low performance.
“The Covid-19 pandemic has adversely affected our business operations leading to slow growth in electricity sales and an increase in financing costs resulting in reduced earnings,” Company Secretary Imelda Bore said in a notice.
KPLC, the sole power distributor in the country has been experiencing allegations of corruption and reducing profits for the last three years,
In February this year, the Public Procurement Administrative Review Board (PPARB) cancelled a Ksh4 billion Kenya Power Last Mile Connectivity contract, terming it as unlawful.
The project was funded by the French Development Agency (Agence Française de Développement) for the construction of substations and power lines.
However, local contractors were left out on technicalities, forcing them to launch a complaint with PPARB accusing the sole power distributor of favouring moneyed foreign firms including Chinese contractors.
In June Last year, Kenya Power’s profits after tax fell by 92 per cent from Ksh3.27 billion to Ksh262 million. The slump was attributed to the rise in non-fuel power purchase costs from Ksh52.795 billion to Ksh70.878 billion.
In July 2018, the then Kenya Power managing director Dr Ken Tarus was unceremoniously ousted over corruption allegations. His arrest and ouster was opposed by the current Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter.
Kenya Power is 50.1% owned by the Government of Kenya and is the sole retail distributor of power in the country.
The company has been on a downward path regarding its profitability, mostly attributed to corruption and poor management.
In 2018, the company issued a profit warning before posting a 63.7 per cent drop in net profit to Ksh1.92 billion, a scenario that was repeated in 2019.
In the same year, Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) was demanding Ksh1 billion in penalties for flouting the 40-day window credit terms.
Do you also remember Mama Ngina Kenyatta, President Uhuru’s mother was named the top investor in the State-owned firm KPLC with over 2.2 million shares?
Mama Ngina listed top investor at Kenya Power with 2.2 million shares https://t.co/uKDj06Rorr Deputy President Ruto owns the company supplying concrete poles to Kenya Power.KPLC is cutting down functioning,wooden poles and replacing them with concrete poles. Tenderpreneurship
— Boniface Mwangi (@bonifacemwangi) January 4, 2018
In January 2018, The #SwitchOffKPLC campaign that started on Twitter and spread through wider social media spaces unleashed an unprecedented and massive outcry against KPLC following nine consecutive months of shocking and fraudulent fleecing of electricity consumers.
The Pressure is REAL & thieves must fall. Sh150B+ stolen from @KenyaPower. OUR MONEY!
— #HumanityKe (@JerotichSeii) July 13, 2020
In June 2019, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) summoned 204 individuals and directors of certain companies to record statements concerning fraudulent Kenya Power billing system for post-paid customers.