President William Ruto used the occasion of the celebrating the new year event to voice major policy statements on cost of energy.
Saying subsidies had to go, the head of state blamed them for costing the economy ‘big time’.
Media reports had indicated that electricity prices was set to go by at least 15 percent following the lapse of the President Uhuru Kenyatta subsidy window on December 31, 2022.
A development president Ruto dismissed as a ‘rumour’.
“I want to allay the fears that are being spread by people that there will be an increase in electricity costs. I want to assure the country that there will be no additional charges today or going into the future on electricity bills to the people of Kenya,” Ruto said.
“Contrary to the stories being peddled around that there will be job losses, there will be additional cost of living…those are just people who are speculators,” he added.
He announced that there is an ongoing tariffs review of tariffs on all energy requirements and in three months’ time there will be public consultations in an effort to ensure the tariffs are sensitive to those with minimum earnings.
Dr Ruto wants the poor and manufacturers cushioned in the proposed tariff reviews.
“We have already taken care of all the subsidies that we removed in August and we are going to make sure that our manufacturers, our value addition and processors and all Kenyans including those on flying tariff are taken into consideration as we review the tariffs going into the future,” the President assured.
Dr Ruto, taking the cue from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has been consistent on subsidies being ‘unsustainable’.
Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) is expected to take leadership on the tariff review and public consultations in three months’ time.
Consumers expect that EPRA will regularly make public the system and commercial losses by the energy distributor, Kenya Power & Lighting Company (KPLC).