Why Nairobi could face total “darkness” in January 2022

Top city lawyers engaged to collect debts during Mike Sonko’s tenure pocketed the money complicating the cash crunch at city hall, Kenya Power says unless a proper debt clearance modality is agreed on and put in motion the county offices will in January 2022 be plunged into darkness

By The Weekly Vision Online

There is little consolation for the Nairobi City County managers over a reported reduction of power tariffs by President Uhuru Kenyatta’s government, with the graft prone county government facing a huge bill from the power utility company. Kenya Power company says city hall has failed to settle a whooping outstanding bill of Ksh. 100 billion, including taxes owed to KRA.

The staggering power bill is said to date as far back as 2012, Kenya Power managers have now written to the new Governor Anne Kananu to explain how the debt will be cleared. The city-county also faces wide-ranging debts owed to constructors, suppliers and KRA also running into millions of shillings.

Some top city lawyers engaged to collect debts during Mike Sonko’s tenure are also said to have pocketed millions complicating the cash crunch at city hall. According to Kenya Power, unless a proper debt clearance modality is agreed on and put in motion the county offices will in January 2022 be plunged into darkness.

The Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) under General Mohamed Badi blams former governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko and his predecessor Evans Kidero whom he accuses of failing to remit payment for power. Mr Kidero served one term 2013-2017 and like Sonko faces wide-ranging multi-billion shillings graft cases

The move comes after President Uhuru Kenyatta announced a drastic reduction in power tariffs designed to bring down the cost of power but this is little consolation for NCC.

The Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) under General Mohamed Badi blams former governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko and his predecessor Evans Kidero whom he accuses of failing to remit payment for power. Mr Kidero served one term 2013-2017 and like Sonko faces wide-ranging multi-billion shillings graft cases. Kidero has been accused of running a huge power bill while doing “business” with the county and “amassing millions” in the process, he is said to have used the money developing a multi-billion-shilling prime property portfolio.

Kenya Power has already given the NMS a 30-day notice to clear the huge bill or face power disconnection in January, something that has even alarmed the national government under President Uhuru Kenyatta. The president has reportedly directed that NMS and KPLC reach a “workable formula” so that services in the city don’t ground to a halt and embarrass the country preparing for a general election next year.

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