Retailers root for tough rule to deter shoplifters that is costing them £174m annually

Retailers are seeking the go-ahead to publish the names and pictures of persons caught shoplifting in their stores in a bid to reduce an estimated annual loss estimated about Sh5 billion.

In a report presented to the State department of Trade, they are also advocating for regulations that will facilitate administration of effective justice on the petty criminals and their networks.

The report forms the basis for ongoing review of the National Trade Policy.

The retailers say in the Study on Kenya Retail Sector Prompt Payment that revenue loss related to shoplifting is one of the leading factors contributing to the rising debt to suppliers.

They complain of an existing cartel of petty offenders who although caught on a regular basis, always find a way out and come back to steal.

“The retailers make arrests of shoplifters and hand them over to the police. However, soon after the arrest, the shoplifter is released on bond and the case takes ages to be finalised,” the report, before Trade PS Chris Kiptoo, states.

The Kenya Retail Analysis report, launched in July 2016, showed the country’s key retailers were losing up to Sh3.5 billion annually to pilferage, with the entire retail sector estimated to incur about Sh5 billion.

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