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Regulator shuts down 29 petrol stations over non-compliance

By Patrick Alushula | March 22nd 2016
By Patrick Alushula | March 22nd 2016
ERC Director General Joseph Ng’ang’a

Energy Regulatory Commission has closed down 29 filling stations in the country for selling adulterated fuel.

In a series of tests conducted between September 2015 to February this year, 56 stations in the country were found to be either selling adulterated fuel or selling fuel meant for export.

Kakamega County had the highest casualties with six stations closed, while Meru had five affected. In Migori, four stations were shut down and Kirinyaga had three. Other nine counties had between one and two cases. In total, the tests saw stations closed in at least 13 counties.

Another 27 stations which had previously been caught violating the law, such as selling adulterated petrol were reopened after paying fines and taxes of between Sh100,000 and Sh1.5 million.

Dakawou Transport Limited station in Nairobi paid the highest penalty of Sh1.5 million, after eight of its trucks were impounded selling petrol products that had been contaminated with kerosene.

County commissioners have also been instructed to withdraw licenses of the defaulting operators until the operators upgrade their facilities and their products meets the acceptable standards.

“Further, the defaulting operators will be required to upgrade the facilities as well as pay penalties and taxes prescribed under the applicable tax laws before consideration for resumption of business,” said ERC.

In a statement, the regulator said that of the 8,945 tests that were conducted on 1,493 petroleum outlets across the country, 96 per cent were found to be compliant.

ERC Director General Joseph Ng’ang’a said that even though majority of the stations are compliant, the regular tests to smoke out the few rogue players will continue.

“Because of the differential taxes charged on each product, some players want to adulterate fuel in order to gain more. That is why we do regular tests,” explained Ng’ang’a.

ERC Licensing Regulations 2013 empower the regulator to monitor fuel products offered in the market.

Tests are carried out after every three months. The regulator says monitoring measures helps guard against adulteration or dumping of export bound fuel into the local market.

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