By Mourice Seretta
The Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority, EPRA, has refuted claims that the Authority had approved higher electricity prices in the wake of a renewed push by Kenya Power to have tariffs increased by at least 20 percent.
In a statement sent to newsrooms, the authority’s Director General Pavel Robert Oimeke seeks to clarify that the tariff application by the Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) is still under the Authority’s review and no approvals have been granted.
Oimeke further says that once the internal review on the tariff application has been completed, and in accordance with the Energy Act 2019 and the Constitution of Kenya 2010, the Authority will embark on stakeholder engagements and public hearings on the application before the final approval is granted.
If implemented, the higher tariffs will hurt household budgets and raise the already high cost of doing business in Kenya.
Kenya Power wants to increase the consumption charge for usage of less than 100 kilowatts per month to Sh12.50 a unit, up from the current Sh10.
The charge for consuming above 100 units will rise to Sh19.53 a unit from the current Sh15.80 in the event that the regulator approves the proposed tariffs.
Kenya Power argues that that the higher tariffs are justified because the present electricity prices lapsed last year.
In 2018, EPRA reduced the retail prices of electricity after an order from President Uhuru Kenyatta in the wake of widespread complaints from domestic customers and small businesses over a costly tariff introduced last July.
The tariff almost doubled the monthly bills for higher-income households, triggering complaints that forced EPRA to cut the tariff from November 2018 to July 2019 to Sh10 per kilowatt hour from Sh15.80 for customers who use below 100 kilowatts per month.