Parliament has written to the Business Registration Service (BRS) demanding a list of shareholders of nine Independent Power Producers (IPPs) as investigations into the high cost of electricity continue.
The House Energy committee, in a letter dated July 7 and seen by the Sunday Nation, has asked BRS Director-General Kenneth Gathuma to submit the latest CR12 forms of the nine IPPs by Friday July 14, 2023.
The MPs want the names of directors of Lake Turkana Wind Power Ltd, Ibeafrica Power (EA) Ltd, Orpower 4 Inc, expanded plan 1-4 and Tsavo Company.
Other IPPs whose shareholding details are needed include Rabai Power Ltd, Thika Power Ltd, Gulf Power Ltd and Triumph Power generating company.
“The information should reach the committee by Friday July 14, 2023,” reads the letter.
The committee wants the BRS to list specific directors where a shareholder of the IPPs is a company.
The committee said the CR12 forms will clear the air on allegations that some of the owners of the power plants are former employees of the Ministry of Energy, Kenya Power and senior government officials.
“One of the key issues the committee is considering is that of ownership of the IPPs. This is particularly important in light of allegations of conflict of interest among current and former officials working in the sector,” reads the letter.
“In order to establish the correct position on this matter, the committee has requested to be furnished with ownership status by way of latest CR12 forms of the companies,” further reads the letter.
Last week, the committee said it was narrowing down to two former Principal Secretaries in the Energy ministry who have major stakes in the IPPs and who participated in the drafting of the “skewed” Power Purchasing Agreements (PPAs).
On Thursday, the committee chaired by Mwala MP Vincent Musyoka sent away two officials of IPPs for failing to disclose the directors of the companies.
A meeting between Tsavo Power Ltd and Rabai power did not continue beyond preliminaries after the two power plants failed to provide CR12 forms.
The MPs said they would not engage with the officials until they know the faces behind the two IPPs and gave the officials up to Wednesday next week to provide the details of CR12 forms.
The MPs believe some IPPs have not been remitting taxes to Kenya Revenue Authority and that some of their representatives are protecting powerful individuals believed to be behind the high cost of electricity.
The lawmakers want the IPPs to renegotiate their PPAs, which will expire in 2034, as one way of reducing the cost of electricity.
The IPPs have however given a number of conditions, such as reduction of taxes on fuel, repayment of their loans until 2019 and extension of their contracts.
In April, the National Assembly adopted a motion by Laikipia Woman Representative Jane Kagiri recommending an inquiry into the operations of Kenya Power in relation to deals entered with the IPPs.
Through the motion, the committee was tasked by the House to look into factors affecting cost of electricity, including over-reliance on IPPs despite availability of renewable and other energy sources.
According to a schedule seen by the Sunday Nation, the committee will on Tuesday meet Energy Cabinet Secretary Davis Chirchir, KenGen, Kenya Power and Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority.
On July 18, the committee will meet with Lake Turkana Wind Power, Kipeto, Kenya Association of Manufacturers and Kenya Private Sector Alliance.
On July 19, the MPs will meet the Attorney-General, the Auditor-General, Treasury CS, Federation of Kenya Employers, Cotu, LSK, Kuppet and the Union of Kenya Civil Servants.
The next day, the MPs will meet experts from the academia, civil society and religious groups before retreating to write their report between August 10 and August 14 and tabling it on August 17, 2023.