IS THIS THE END OF KEROCHE BREWERIES?

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Keroche Breweries founder Tabitha Karanja

By EUGINE ONYANGO on June 14 2022

Keroche Breweries has been shut down once again after an agreement on how it would offset its tax arrear hit a hard rock.

Keroche Breweries founder, Tabitha Karanja, While addressing the press on Tuesday, June 14,noted that the move has the future of its 400 workers hanging in the balance.

She also noted that if the closure is not stopped, beer worth Ksh350 million could go to waste.”Thousands of innocent hard working Kenyans are undergoing the indignity and injustice of unemployment, poverty and hunger,” Karanja stated.

It is claimed that the company had defaulted on earlier agreement to gradually settle its outstanding tax arrears which it has denied.

“I specifically request once more to be given a moratorium on the enforcement action that shut down our operations, and on the unsustainable payment plan that we agreed to under unbearable pressure.

“I therefore also humbly request for further engagement to consider a way for the company to meet its due obligations without sacrificing it and the livelihoods of countless Kenyan households,” she added

Keroche Breweries has had long-running battles with the Kenya Revenue Authority on tax. In 2015, the company was shutdown for two weeks over a backdated duty of about Sh1 billion for the ready to drink Vienna Ice vodka.

Earlier on in march Keroche Breweries CEO stated they have agreed with the taxman to settle the tax issue immediately when they were given chance of resuming normal operation. Keroche agreed to pay Ksh957 million to the tax authority in a period of 24 months starting January 2022.

In her statement on June 14, Karanja asked for a chance to rebuild the business and save the jobs of her staff before settling the tax arrears.

“I specifically request once more to be given a moratorium on the enforcement action that shut down our operations, and on the unsustainable payment plan that we agreed to under unbearable pressure.

“I therefore also humbly request for further engagement to consider a way for the company to meet its due obligations without sacrificing it and the livelihoods of countless Kenyan households,” she added.

She accused the government of issuing an advisory to 36 banks not to lend Keroche, a move she noted had greatly contributed to her company’s financial woes.

this is another time the company is being shut down, will this be the end oF Keroche Breweries?