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5 Kenya Power bosses grilled by DCI on national blackout

January 16th 2022, 11:08:55 am

It has emerged that 4 towers which collapsed may have been compromised

Energy CS Monica Juma accompanied by Interior PS Major General (Rtd) Gordon Kihalangwa, Deputy Inspector General of Police Noor Gabow and Ag Kenya Power CEO Engineer Rosemary Oduor during an inspection of collapsed Imara Daima transmission line on January 14, 2022

The national government has opted to prosecute Kenya Power managers following a nationwide blackout which lasted for most of January 11, 2022.

Details conveyed to newsrooms indicate that five of the electricity company's managers have already been grilled by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) over the fault which left many in darkness for almost two days.

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According to preliminary investigations, the four towers - which were said to have collapsed leading to the outage - may have been 'intentionally weakened'.

Interventions by the Ministry of Energy, Ministry of Interior and the Inspector General of Police's office have seen the Kenya Power bosses now accused of economic sabotage.

DCI detectives have now found that the managers had been informed of the state of the towers, through recorded video clips, in November 2021 but no action was taken to secure them.

Police are also said to have found evidence of vandalism at the site of the towers making it a criminal investigation.

"The power outages in the last two days underscore the imperative and urgency of implementing the proposed reforms in our power sector to ensure stable and reliable power supply.

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"The Ministry of Energy is hard at work to ensure that the experience of the last two days does not recur," stated Energy CS, Dr Monica Juma, prior to visiting the Imara Daima transmission line.

Reports indicate that more Kenya Power managers are set to be grilled by DCI officials in the week starting January 17, 2022.

Kenya Power ventures into internet supply

In an attempt to cut losses, Kenya Power announced its plan to connect millions of customers in rural homes with high-speed internet.

Previously, KPLC has been leasing fibre-optic cables attached to its transmission lines to Internet service providers. Due to an increase in demand for internet, the electricity distributor is confident of rivaling all other internet providers.

“In the medium to long-term, the company is exploring the lit fibre business to increase the penetration of internet connectivity, particularly in the rural areas,” said Kenya Power in its latest annual report.

Kenya Power is at an advantage as compared to already existing Internet Service Providers (ISPs) due to its recent expansion of electricity penetration across the country which saw them connect to millions of potential customers in rural areas.

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Miriam Mwende

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