Man sentenced to prison for cooking using transformer oil


Transformer oil/Photo Courtesy

Engineer law court in Nyandarua has sentenced a man to 2 years in prison or a fine of KShs. 200,000 for selling potato chips cooked using transformer oil.

Elijah Mwangi Muthoga who operates a hotel at Ol Kalou trading centre, was
arrested in December 2021 while in possession of 11 litres of transformer oil which
was used to cook chips at his hotel as well as repackaged for sale as popcorn
cooking oil.

His co-accused Zachary Mwangi Gitau, from whom he obtained the transformer
oil, was handed a 10 years’ imprisonment or a fine of KShs. 10 million for
vandalizing a 100kva transformer contrary to section 169 (1) of the Energy Act of

“This ruling is a big boost to the Company’s effort to fight transformer vandalism
as the stiff penalties and jail terms will deter vandals,” said Kenya Power’s Ag.
Manager for Security Services Maj. Paul Nyaga (Rtd).

The ruling comes at a time when Kenya Power has heightened surveillance of the
network through partnerships with other security agencies and the National
Government Administration Officers in order to stamp out illegal activities and
safeguard electricity assets.

Vandalism of transformers is one of the leading causes of power outages. In
addition to undermining the quality and reliability of the electricity supply,
transformer vandalism poses a risk of electrocution and exposes the Company to
financial losses in lost sales and the cost of replacing the transformers.

(Courtesy Kenya Power)

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