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KRA, Kenya Pipeline implement e-monitoring in fuel adulteration fight

An illegal fuel den in Nakuru. PHOTO | SULEIMAN MBATIAH | NMG
An illegal fuel den raided by police officers in Nakuru. FILE PHOTO | SULEIMAN MBATIAH | NMG  

The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) and Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC) have stepped up the war on adulteration and diversion of fuel in the North Rift with the use of online monitoring of trucks.

The taxman's North Rift regional coordinator Florence Otory said the area between was notorious for unscrupulous individuals who divert the commodity while fuel trucks are on transit.

“The new electronic system will see all trucks passing through the border tracked in real-time. In case of any malpractice on the way, the geo map will send an alert to the central monitoring system for immediate action,” explained Ms Otory on Thursday during a sensitization Forum on KRA's customs procedures in Eldoret.

“We’ve discovered that there is rampant siphoning of fuel in the transport sector in Kenya. We call on the public to support our efforts to stamp out this vice,” she added.

Recently, KRA and KPC officials in the North Rift destroyed more than 30,000 litres of adulterated fuel in the Jua Kali area and its outskirts.

It is suspected that some well known people in the region are colluding with security agencies manning major road blocks to engage in the vice.

Regional tracking

In 2014, Northern Corridor Heads of State at a summit in Kigali resolved to adopt the e-monitoring of cargo in a bid to curb diversion of fuel in eastern Africa.

The meeting, which brought together Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania, was preceded by the signing of the East African Community (EAC) common market customs union protocol in 2004.

Among other features, the Regional Electronic Cargo Tracking System (RECTS) triggers an alarm when a truck diverts from its designated route or makes unusually long stopover.

“With the regional electronic cargo tracking system in place, days of unscrupulous individuals are numbered. More than 2,000 police officers are attached to the system from Mombasa to Malaba border,” explained Ms Otory.

More revenue

With the introduction of the stringent measures, the KRA is anticipating to generate Sh1.2 trillion annually from cargo in the EAC market.

Currently, the country has a total storage capacity of 612.3 million litres of oil across its depots in Mombasa, Nakuru, Eldoret and Kisumu.

RECTS was launched by the bloc's member States in March this year.

KPC Eldoret depot manager Anthony Sang regretted that in the past oil dumping has led to the country incurring major losses.

“We want to boost efficient service delivery to the greater East African Community...The goodness of the electronic system is that it cannot be manipulated,” said Mr Sang.

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