Kenya Power has engaged the National Treasury to help it recover arrears owed to the utility by large consumers in which the government has a stake and has since run into financial headwinds rendering them unable to settle obligations for power consumed.
The electricity distributor says it is looking to get the Exchequer’s assistance in recovering at least Sh1.5 billion from entities that have since collapsed, notably sugar millers in the Western region sugar belt and one player in the country’s horticulture sector.
In the full year ended June 2022, Kenya Power’s total overdue debt owed by consumers stood at Sh19.7 billion, having decreased by eight percent compared to the prior year.
This means that Kenya Power took a hit of as much as 13.0 percent of its annual total sales in overdue debt by consumers.
“The biggest challenge is those companies that went under with Kenya Power’s money. Even as the government plans to bring back to life a number of these companies, we are engaging them so that they recognise that there is a bill that is owed to Kenya Power,” Kenya Power Managing Director, Joseph Siror, says.
Dr Siror says the firm has now placed large power consumers on a tight leash with a view to addressing future risks stemming from arrears. Kenya Power is demanding guarantees from such players to provide a cushion for itself on power sales.