Cabinet Secretary Monica Juma has started off on the wrong foot barely 10 days after being moved to the energy docket following a mini-reshuffle by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Juma was moved to the powerful ministry on Wednesday, September 29 losing her Defense docket to CS Eugene Wamalwa.
But she has already landed in the corridors of justice even before properly acquainting herself with the new roles.Energy Cabinet Secretary Monica Juma During Past International Conference
She has inherited the mess that was left behind by CS Charles Keter who was moved to the Ministry of Devolution.
In the court battle, the CS has been sued alongside Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yattani, over the recent rise in fuel prices.
The Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC), in this case, is arguing that the CSs have failed to shield Kenyans from the high cost of fuel prices.
“The sharp rise in fuel can be attributed to a policy shift where the State abruptly suspended a fuel subsidy designed to cushion customers from higher fuel prices. The rise in fuel costs is expected to hurt Kenyans as the cost of living surges, with the prices of other commodities rising as a result of higher petrol cost,” argues KHRC lawyer John Khaminwa.
In their argument, KHRC state that the new tax is double what is being charged at the pump.
They further noted that the move to charge excise taxes and levies is not only unsustainable, it is also an impediment to basic rights such as food, housing, healthcare, and water.
Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (Epra) and Attorney General Kihara Kariuki and the taxman are also sued for failing to cushion Kenyans from high prices imposed on f petrol, diesel, and kerosene.
Earlier this week, Petroleum and Mining CS John Munyes ruled any possibilities of reducing fuel prices.
Appearing before the Senate Committee on Energy, Munyes maintained fuel prices are determined by external factors beyond the ministry’s control, and told Kenyans to brace for hard times ahead.
“The cargos will close on the 10th of October and therefore it is at that time we will know whether they are going up or down. So it is nor rocket science. It is not something I can say I will do because it is a formula that determines the price,” said Munyes.An Image of Car Fueling at a Petrol Station
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