Royal Mabati Factory has lost an appeal to overturn a Sh2.65 million penalty for misleading customers that they deliver purchased roofing products countrywide for free.
The Competition Tribunal has also found the beleaguered roofing materials firm guilty of forcing buyers to change product specifications after receiving payments and lengthy delays failing in refunding clients for cancelled orders.
In addition to the cash penalty, the Competition Authority of Kenya had also ordered Royal Mabati to pay up outstanding refunds for cancelled orders within 60 days or deliver roofing materials to complainants within 30 days.
The besieged firm has also been directed to pull down and cease further misleading advertisements on free countrywide delivery of roofing materials in print and electronic media dating as far as January 2019.
Additionally, the besieged roofing materials manufacturer is required to sensitise sales and customer care representatives on provisions of section 55 of the Competition Act which outlaws misrepresentation of product features, including pricing, to customers.
CAK cheered the tribunal’s ruling saying it “will deter suppliers of goods and services from engaging in conduct that misrepresents the terms of a transaction to consumers and encourage implementation of robust and fair complaints redress mechanisms”.
The tribunal rendered the verdict after dismissing with costs a plea by Royal Mabati seeking to quash the financial penalty imposed by the competition watchdog in May 2020.