Racket exposed: Sony sugar suspends staff

Sony Sugar acting MD Bernard Otieno when he appeared before the National Assembly Agriculture and Trade Joint Committees on the Sugar with Mercury at Parliament. [Boniface Okendo/Standard]
Sony Sugar Company has interdicted seven senior staff linked to a fuel siphoning racket that resulted in losses of Sh204 million in a year.

The company suspects the racket, discovered this week, may have been going on for some time.

The suspended staff worked in the transport department and were suspected to be behind the syndicate.

Sony Managing Director Bernard Otieno said the firm was investigating the matter.

“We took drastic steps to find out why we are spending so much on fuel each year,” said Mr Otieno.

Huge disparity

He said after outsourcing fuel supply and monitoring usage, the company realised a huge disparity in costs.

According to Finance Manager Peter Otieno, they needed to spend Sh6 million on fuel per month, but were spending up to Sh17 million.

“In some instances, the company ended up spending up to Sh250 million on fuel costs alone. But we are happy things have now changed,” said the finance manager.

Several drivers and transport fleet workers suspected of colluding with outsiders to siphon fuel are also being investigated.

“We have partnered with the police to help us curb fuel theft,” said the MD.

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Sony Sugar CompanyBernard Otieno