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A clearing and forwarding agents’ body is headed for trouble with two camps jostling over national offices.

A clearing and forwarding agents’ body is headed for trouble with two camps jostling over national offices.


Some 300 members of the Kenya International Freight and Warehousing Association (Kifwa), led by William Ojonyo have convened a special general meeting today, while national officials say the meeting is illegal.


Mr Ojonyo, managing director of Nairobi based Keynote Logistics Ltd put up an avert in the local press on August 31 announcing today’s meeting whose agenda is elections and presentation of audited accounts.


“We have not seen the organization’s audited accounts for years and we would want to know how our money is being spent. We therefore have a reason to believe that our funds are being embezzled,” said Ojonyo in a telephone interview on Thursday. Kifwa members pay an annual subscription fee of Sh7,000.


However, in a counter move yesterday, national chairman Gerald Kagumo, his vice Peter Mambembe, secretary William Amole, treasurer Corrine Matovu, two executive members Valentine Mwakamba and Vicent Mwachiro placed another advert declaring the meeting illegal.


“I have not received a notice for the special meeting and I am not aware of it. The members should not use the issue of audited accounts as a scape-goat because the accounts are available anytime on request and we will present them during our annual general meeting,” said Mr Amole.


The Kifwa officials allege that the splinter group is opposed to current reforms the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) is carrying out, including introduction of new online cargo clearing systems intended to weed out unscrupulous agents.


KRA has added a certificate of value – Form C52 to the list of cargo clearing documents – which provides for importers to specify the name of authorized clearing agents and the value of imported cargo.


“Some of these agents are the ones who defraud the government of revenue by forging documents that undervalue cargo,” Mr Mambembe said.


“We would like to remind our members that the national officials are committed to upholding the reforms introduced by customs service department at KRA which are aimed at enhancing revenue collection and facilitate trade,” the notice reads in part.