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Row over copper wires found in yard Mombasa yard

By STANLEY MWAHANGA

MOMBASA, COUNTY: Kenya Power is investigating a consignment of cables which was recovered at a private yard in Jomvu, Mombasa County.

The power company officials said they recovered copper winding cables and earth wire cables yesterday stuffed inside sacks and about to be loaded into a 40-ft container. Apart from the copper wires, they also found some scrap metal, car radiators, wornout car batteries, pieces of iron sheet and bars. It is believed the cables were to be shipped to China.

Kenya Power Coast Regional Manager Haid Yussuf said the cables worth Sh5 million are mainly found in the company’s transformers. He said further investigations are necessary to ascertain the cables’ identity.

However, Embakasi West MP Irshad Sumra, who arrived at the scene, refuted claims that the cables belonged to Kenya Power and challenged the company to produce evidence proving ownership.

“These are cables that can be found even in towns. There are no marks to show that they belong to Kenya Power,” Sumra, who is also secretary general of Scrap Metal Association, said.

He said he has documents to show that some of the cables had been imported from as far as Burundi and had been certified by Kenya Power officials as having been imported.

NOT HOOLIGANS

Sumra denied that the go-down where the materials were found belongs to him and said he was visiting Mombasa when the yard’s owner called to tell him that Kenya Power had impounded his cables.

“I have been in this business for close to 30 years. We as scrap metal dealers are not hooligans, we are in fact at the forefront trying to ensure that vandalism of State infrastructure is curbed,” he said.

Eng Yussuf said vandalism at the coastal region has increased with the power company being forced to repair at least six to 10 transformers every month.

He said the impact this has on the economy is quite steep since it is very costly to replace transformers and cables.

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