The Competition Authority of Kenya (CAK) has cautioned retailers against misrepresentation of the prices on shelves and at the till, noting that exploitation of consumers is an offence.
This comes after several complaints were launched online by shoppers who paid prices at the till that were higher than those on the shelves.
“The authority reminds retailers that misrepresentation, including variance of till and shelf prices of goods offered for sale, is an offence under the Competition Act,” said CAK in a statement.
“Whereas the authority has not received any formal complaint regarding this matter, our investigative team is apprised of the allegations on social media.”
The law says a false representation with respect to prices of goods or services is an offence that can be punishable with a maximum of five years in jail or a fine not exceeding Sh10 million or both.
The competition watchdog is responsible for promoting and protecting effective competition in markets and preventing misleading market conduct throughout the country.
The regulator called on consumers affected by the variance in prices between shelves and tills to file their complaints.
“Members of the public who have encountered variances in shelf and till prices at any retail outlet are invited to lodge complaints with the authority through our public portal,” CAK’s statement read.
The uproar on social media platforms from several consumers shows that some retailers are charging more at the till compared to prices displayed on shelves.
Such a discrepancy hurts consumers by duping them to spend more than they expected.