Kenyan distributors in plea over cement sales

Kenyan distributors in plea over cement sales
Published: 09 February 2004

Local cement distributors have appealed for President Kibaki’s intervention in the cements market to stop on-going monopoly.  A spokesman for the distributors, Mr Paul Njuguna, accused East African Portland Cement and the Ministry of Trade and Industry of negotiating with an unnamed distributor to force others out of the market.  In a statement, Njuguna cited a government-sponsored restructuring of the company, which led to the removal of its monopoly in cement distribution in the country last year.

But now, said Njuguna, the previously favoured distributor has "cleverly and shrewdly" manoeuvred his way back through the courts, the Ministry of Trade and Industry and the East African Portland Cement. The said distributor, he added, has resumed the old monopolistic tendencies and was now forcing other distributors out of business.

Last month, the High Court stopped East African Portland Cement from meddling in a multi-million shilling cement contract. Commercial Court Judge Mohammed Ibrahim issued a temporary injunction barring the cement firm from breaching a three-year contract awarded to Donholm Rahisi Stores last year.