Demand soars for cheaper fuel

September 22, 2008

, NAIROBI, September 22 – Pressure has continued to mount on oil marketers to lower their pump prices by as much as Sh10 per litre.

Energy Minister Kiraitu Murungi on Monday pointed out that even though many fuel stations had reduced their prices by Sh4 per litre, it was still far below what was expected of them.

“This reduction although welcome is not sufficient. It is far below the expected drop of Sh10 per litre,” he said noting that international crude oil prices had fallen by more than $40 per barrel in the recent past.

Mr Murungi threatened to name and shame petrol stations which were charging exorbitant prices for their petroleum products since crude oil prices had dropped from a high of $149 per barrel to about $100 currently.

He further outlined plans by the energy ministry to use the media to warn Kenyans about such stations and stressed that consumers would also be sensitised where to get fair prices for petroleum products.

“The Ministry of Energy will with immediate effect sponsor radio programs to advise Kenyans on which petrol stations in different areas are offering the lowest and the highest prices for petrol, diesel and kerosene,” Mr Murungi stated.

At the same time, the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) threatened to take legal action against the Energy minister if he failed to compel oil marketing companies to reduce fuel prices within seven days.

LSK Chairman Okongo Omogeni said the society wanted the minister to use the powers bestowed on him by the Energy Regulation Act to regulate fuel pump prices.

“The minister said he wants to see the prices going down by eight shillings this has not happened. We are watching keenly what action he will take because I’m seeing the fuel stations are still adamant,” Omogeni said.

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