Inside Kenya Power tendering unit under the auditor’s radar

Kenya Power has suspended the top leadership of the supply chain division comprising 59 members of staff to pave the way for a forensic audit.

The electricity distributor said the suspension was part of the recommendations made by the presidential taskforce that sought to reform Kenya Power and the energy sector, so as to catalyse a 33 per cent cut in the cost of the end user tariff by Christmas, this year.

The utility did not reveal the names of those affected in the latest announcement.

However, the division led by Dr John Ngeno, who is the listed firm’s general manager, supply chain and logistics is responsible for managing procurement inventory.

“As a consequence, and in compliance with the taskforce recommendations, Kenya Power has, with immediate effect, suspended the top leadership of the supply chain division comprising 59 members of staff to pave the way for forensic audit. In the interim, the company has appointed a team in an acting capacity to ensure business continuity,” Kenya Power said.

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The unit controls the bulk of the Kes47.8 billion spent by Kenya Power every year on operations, network management, commercial and administrative costs.

Previously, the unit was led by former Kenya power CEO Bernard Ngugi before he was appointed to the corner office.

Mr Ngugi left Kenya Power in a huff in August citing boardroom wrangles following the board’s involvement in matters procurement.

Kenya Power has been bogged down by several procurement scandals in recent years ranging from faulty meters to over-priced transformers, besides billing and power tokens’ purchase scams.

Jobs at Kenya Power, which is currently being headed by former general manager customer service, Engineer Rosmary Oduor are very insecure.

Kenya Power has had four CEO’s in just four years, reflecting a troubling turnover rate at the troubled company’s highest office.

In 2018, Mr Ken Tarus was hounded out of office and charged along his predecessor, Dr Ben Chumo, and a number of other senior managers for conspiring to commit an economic crime and abuse of office.

He was replaced by Jared Othieno in acting capacity.

Mr Othieno served up to 2019 and was replaced by Mr Ngugi who was at the time head of its procurement division.

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