Scrap battery smuggling hurt local car industry

Friday, September 30th, 2022 04:15 | By
Scrap battery smuggling hurt local car industry
Car battery. PHOTO/PEXELS

The local automobile industry is staring at a serious shortage of raw materials following the intense smuggling of scrap batteries by unscrupulous traders who have been using the porous Kenya/ Tanzania border.

Players in the industry are now calling on the government to crack down on the traders who operate with impunity along the said route.

An intensified crackdown on smugglers by the police has however helped in the arrest of a number of trucks. In the last month, over six trucks exporting scrap batteries to Tanzania have been intercepted and charged in court. Yesterday morning a truck ferrying scrap batteries was intercepted at Emali area on the Mombasa/Nairobi Highway.

The truck according to the eastern region Criminal Investigation Officer (CCIO) Catharine Njue was intercepted at around 1.30 am.

“They were carrying used batteries but had also loaded metal drums which they used to disguise as the only product being ferried. However our hawk-eyed officers managed to intercept it and arrested the driver who will be arraigned before the court this morning,” said Njue.

Meanwhile, another driver of a lorry which was seized along Nairobi-Mombasa Road in the Makindu area and arraigned before a local court is set to appear at the Makindu Magistrate’s court for the hearing of the case.

Daudi Sangunai denied the charge of ferrying scrap metal without a valid licence and was freed on a Sh 1 million cash bail.

Battery manufacturers in the country have lamented that they are likely to run short of raw materials following the increased smuggling of scrap batteries to Tanzania and Uganda.

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