Kisumu Molasses Plant was involved in tax evasion, and dumping of cheap alcohol in Kenya

Nation Media

IN SUMMARY

  • The syndicate involves police officers who receive huge bribes to ensure the culprits are not arrested, the officials said.
  • KRA and Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission officials on Tuesday raided a godown at Embakasi and impounded truckloads of ethanol.
  • The trucks ended up at the godown in Embakasi, where more ethanol was found in drums.
  • Cartons containing 250ml of branded spirits – Best Gin, Blue Ice and Flying Horse – were also found at the godown.
  • Officials said they also found fake Kenya Revenue Authority stickers.

Customs and anti-corruption officials have unearthed a multi-million-shilling syndicate involving the illegal packaging and sale of untaxed ethanol meant for export.

The syndicate involves police officers who receive huge bribes to ensure the culprits are not arrested, the officials said.

After two weeks of an undercover operation, Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) and Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission officials on Tuesday raided a godown at Embakasi, Nairobi, and impounded truckloads of ethanol.

“We had intelligence that ethanol intended for export was being diverted into the local market to make illicit liquor. This means the culprits never paid taxes.

This is because ethanol for export is exempted from taxes,” said the anti-graft agency’s deputy chief executive officer, Mr Michael Mubea.

In the undercover operation, officers said they followed three trucks that left Spectre International Ltd in Kisumu carrying drums of ethanol, which was declared as a product for export to a company in Mwanza, Tanzania.

The trucks ended up at the godown in Embakasi, where more ethanol was found in drums.

According to the officials, cartons containing 250ml of branded spirits – Best Gin, Blue Ice and Flying Horse – were also found at the godown. The brands are popular with youth, who buy them for Sh100 per bottle.

FAKE KRA STICKERS

Officials said they also found fake Kenya Revenue Authority stickers.

During the journey from Kisumu, the officials also noted the trucks were being escorted by a saloon car that made several stops along the way.

Police in cars with civilian registration number plates stopped by the “escort” car and collected what is believed to have been bribes. Anti-graft officials are now looking for the cars used by the police officers after they were caught on camera at Westlands, Nairobi.

According to the police, some of the occupants of the vehicles were in police uniform, while others wore civilian clothes. The “escort” car was also impounded.

“This consignment alone is worth Sh7 million in evaded tax revenue,” said Mr Mubea.

KRA Deputy Commissioner James Mburu said some unscrupulous businessmen were taking advantage of government initiatives to commit crimes.

“We do not tax ethanol for export to ensure local companies are competitive in the regional market. We don’t levy VAT or Excise Duty,” he said.

Mr Mburu added: “The exporting company will be investigated and will face sanctions. It is the responsibility of the company to ensure products for export exit the country and produce documents to prove this every month.”

The impounded goods were taken to a Customs yard and the godown sealed until investigations are completed.

Kiyapi should shut-up; he failed

Gordon Opiyo

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I got nauseated when I saw Prof Ole Kiyaipi criticizing Dr Matiangi on the Education Reforms.
I had a one on one encounter with the mega rot at the Ministry of Education between 2010 and 2011 when Ole Kiyaipi was the PS.
By the Grace of God I was selected by the British Government to help set up accountability measures that would have helped parents to hold teachers and headteachers to account on the money being sent for free primary education. At that time, the British Government had suspended funding the free primary education to the tune of 4,2 billion per year, and other donors also withdrew 16 billion. Part of my task was to put up a system in which everyone would know how much cash came to the school, and how it was used.
In February 2011 I was in a team led by Mark Waltham, then British Government head of Education in Kenya to meet Prof Kiyaipi. He promised to give us full co-operation. He raised our hopes that things would be fine. All we needed was data from his ministry, and details of the cash sent, so that we put it in our accountability system.
That was the first and last meeting we ever had with the officials of the ministry. I came face to face raw impunity. Nobody wanted to give details. What I gathered was that senior officials at the ministry had formed a cartel that sent extra cash to schools, and then went to share the loot with the headteachers. I also gathered that the text books scheme was another cash cow.
In short, the British Government plan to fund a system that would have seen Kenyans hold Education officials to account was frustrated and collapsed. As a result, all donors pulled out- and that did not bother the senior officials.
Then in comes in President Uhuru, and Dr Matiangi.
They decide to take the cartels head on, face to face, man to man mundu khwu mundu.
One thing I know is that the education sector was rotten to the core, and only committed leaders like President Uhuru and Dr Matiangi could deal with the cartels.
You may want to ask- what used to happen to examination results between December and March?
How comes we are seeing some schools that used to score 100 As having only 3 or 4?
Your guess is as good as mine. After ,marking, the process of selling marks went on for two months, before the results were released. Rich schools bought As, and poor schools were denied their marks.
People like Sossion, Ole Kiyaipi and other should not even open their mouths to say anything about education in Kenya.

Prophesies of enemies of progress

I recall that no sooner were Uhuruto sworn in 2013 than enemies of progress prophesied of their falling apart.

The line was…

Uhuru (Kikuyu) will shortchange Ruto (Kalenjin) and that will be the end of Jubilee Coalition…

When that didn’t happen…they crafted another line…

Uhuruto is a marriage of convenience, these two “criminals” came together to defeat ICC…but now that Ruto has realized it’s the Kikuyus who fixed him and now that Uhuru has been cleared…sit and watch as Kalenjins angrily walk out of Jubilee Coalition…

This ridiculous expectation also flopped…

The enemies of progress ventured into conspiracy…

Oh…Uhuru went to see Moi and promised to make Gideon his running mate…Ruto is finished…

Of course no one in his right mind would take such a joke seriously…

Now that Uhuruto are in power…enemies of progress are allover with even more conspiracies…

You know Ruto is not a prince…the deal was between Kenyatta and Moi…Uhuru agreed to handover to Gideon who will handover to Uhuru’s son

Oh Kikuyus can NEVER support Ruto…they still remember the 2007/8…

What will they say once Ruto is sworn in in 2022? Wait…

Ruto rigged himself in and must be resisted. We need electoral reforms…Ruto Mas Go..

But when all that fail…they’ll be like…

No one is going to reelect Ruto in 2027…Ruto is a one term president…He can’t defeat RaiMoi ticket…

I can only sympathize with these enemies of progress.