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Ruto suspends 27 officials from KEBS, KRA and other agencies over irregular release of condemned sugar


President William Ruto. [Denish Ochieng, Standard]

President William Ruto has cracked the whip on officials from eleven (11) government agencies on grievous accusations of irregular and criminal release of condemned sugar.

The said sugar had been earmarked for conversion into industrial ethanol.

In a statement by Head of the Public Service Felix Koskei, the sugar consignment comprising of 20,000 bags (each 50kgs) had been imported into the country in the year 2018 and condemned by the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) for want of expiry date specification.

Majority of the 27 officials hail from the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS).

They are;

Kenya Bureau of Standards

Col (Rtd) Bernard Njiraini, the Managing Director Geoffrey Muriira, Director Quality Assurance and Inspection Hilda Keror, Manager Inspection, Mombasa Port Office Liston Lagat, Assistant Manager, ICDN Nairobi Rono Birgen Chief Manager, ICDN Nairobi Stephen Owuor, Principal Officer Peter Olima Joseph - Inspector, Mombasa.

Kenya Revenue Authority

Joseph Kaguru Mwanja Masinde Stephen Muiruri Moses Okoth Doris Mutembei Chacha Hondo Carol Nyagechi Derick Kago

National Police Service

George Mithamo Joel Kirui

Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI)

Bernard Ngumbi Raphael Mwaka

Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA)

Oscar Kai Patrick Magut

Others are; Joseph Maita Mweni (Port Health), Isacko Bonai (NEMA), Stephen Cheruiyot (Anti-Counterfeit Agency), Daniel Ngugi (KEPHIS), Willy Koskei (EACC), Edwin Ruto (KPA).

"KEBS condemned the consignment as unfit for human consumption and directed that the consignment be reshipped and destroyed at the owner's cost," said Koskei.

Koskei further said that KEBS National Standards Council approved destruction through conversion of the consignment for industrial ethanol use.

"The industrial ethanol conversion was to be implemented under the joint supervision of KEBS and the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA), within a multi-agency framework. The condition precedent to the conversion were; involvement of all the concerned regulatory agencies; sourcing a distiller through an open and competitive tendering process; and securing the payment of applicable taxes and statutory fees," said Koskei.

The Head of Public Service further noted that the consignment was released.

"It has since been established that the consignment was irregularly diverted and uprocedurally released. Further, the conditions relating to open and competitive enlisting of the distiller were breached and the applicable taxes were not paid." Said Koskei.

Koskei called on all public officers to uphold their civic duty and the ethos of honesty, integrity and accountability.

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