, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 15 – The Consumer Federation of Kenya (COFEK) now wants all regulatory bodies in the country to have consumer representation by May 1 this year.
Speaking to journalists on Friday, the lobby group’s Secretary General Stephen Mutoro said the authorities should do this in line with the new Consumer Protection Act 2012 assented to by President Mwai Kibaki in December last year.
He said the group will put more effort to ensure the law is fully adopted by all stakeholders to strengthen the influence of the consumer.
“I know we have been making noise but now we have legal backing. As a matter of fact the deadline is even due. We demand that all the regulatory authorities, which are about 20, to make sure they find mechanisms within which they can appoint consumer representatives. We think is possible and reasonable,” Mutoro demanded.
He said COFEK next week write all the authorities to emphasise the matter.
Mutoro also called on the Trade Minister to hasten the establishment of the Consumer Protection Advisory Committee to help in the full implementation of the law.
“We are talking about bodies like the Energy Regulatory Commission, National Environment Management Authority, and many others. As soon as the gazettement notice comes from the Government Printer, which is going to be soon, we will get more strength to demand for this,” Mutoro said.
He lamented at Thursdays fuel hike, adding that it was not clear what exact formula ERC used to hike the prices, considering the stable exchange rate and international oil costs.
“We have always complained all through about the commission but nothing much have been done. We hope that this law will address this. This are not the days for price controls but ensure competition plays the role. This way we will not only be able to manage prices but also deal with monopoly,” he added.
The ERC raised the price of a litre of super petrol by Sh4.12 in Nairobi to retail at Sh117.69, diesel by Sh1.17 to Sh107.37, while the price of kerosene was raised by Sh2.61 to sell at Sh88.50.
Mutoro was speaking during the marking of the World Consumer Rights Day, started in March 15, 1962 by the then US president John Kennedy.