By Njoroge Kinuthia
Ms Dorcas N has a major issue with oil marketers Total and Shell and their regulator Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC).
Last Saturday, she went to buy cooking gas at Acacia Supermarket in Tala but, unfortunately, returned home with her empty Total gas cylinder. Reason? A supermarket attendant informed her that the management of Afrigas, the only gas available then, had given instructions that their cylinders should not be exchanged with those of Total.
“This surprised me because sometime back, we were all forced to buy universal regulators so that we could use any cylinder, something that was also touted as the best way to bring the prices of cooking gas down,” she recalls.
This is not the first time PointBlank has come across such a complaint. Apparently Liquefied Petroleum Gas marketers are still engaging in turf wars, which make gas costly and even ‘unavailable’. What is saddening is that ERC appears to be in a deep slumber and unaware of this state of affairs.
Firms that give KP a bad name
When power went off on May 19 during the finals of the UEFA league in the CBD and at Westlands, says Mr Migwi Theuri, Corporate Communications, Kenya Power, many must have cursed KP for the interruption. Indeed, the KP switchboard was inundated with outraged callers protesting the outage during this all important football contest.
In this particular case, Mr Theuri says a firm installing fibre optic cables at Westlands, Lower Kabete Road, adjacent to Sarit Centre had dug (and is still digging) trenches next to a high voltage power line.
In the process of digging, he explains, the workers exposed the base of a number of power poles, and when it rained that evening one of them collapsed and caused a short-circuit. This caused the power outage in Westlands and CBD.
“As we have often said, third party activities that interfere with continuous flow of power are quite often responsible for that inconvenience that so annoys our customers.”