Parliament stops signing of 22 dam project tenders
Dam projects worth more than Sh188 billion face delay, putting Kenya’s food security bid at risk after Parliament stopped the Ministry of Water from signing contracts until the government secures land through compensation.
There are 22 dam projects that are in the process of procurement and have either been tendered or about to be tendered.
National Assembly’s Environment committee at the same time asked the Directorate of Criminal Investigations and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to investigate contracts awarded through the Engineering Procurement Construction and Financing (EPCF) model to ascertain whether Kenyans got value for money.
The committee’s chairman, Kareke Mbiuki, directed Water Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui not to proceed to award contracts for dam construction that is not in the possession of the Ministry. “We cannot enslave Kenyans with further loans for projects that will not be completed. This committee rules that those that have not been finalised stand suspended. We are also inviting the DCI and the EACC to investigate dam projects awarded under the EPCF,” Mr Mbiuki ruled.
The committee said the EPCF projects are designed to award tenders to briefcase contractors who are paid in advance and cannot undertake dam projects to completion.
“It is pointless to award mega projects through EPCF, pay cowboy contractors in advance and the government fails to compensate landowners to pave the way for construction of the projects,” Mr Mbiuki said at a meeting with the CS.
Mr Chelugui tabled a list of 24 projects worth Sh188 billion that are either at request for proposal (RFP) stage or RFP finalised but awaiting clearance of the Treasury for the financing agreement to be signed.
The dams that are in the pipeline include the Sh6 billion Kamumu, Rupingazi (Sh5.5 billion), Thambana (Sh5 billion), Maara (Sh4.1 billion), Thingithu (Sh600 million), Kahurura (Sh5.9 billion), Kinja (Sh3.9 billion) and Wiyumiririe (Sh3 billion).
Others are Karemeno (Sh8bn), Londiani (Sh4.6bn), Bute (Sh15bn), Bosto (Sh19.9 billion) which the Treasury has cleared for financing by China Exim Bank, Maragua IV (Sh7 billion), Keben/Lesos (Sh4.2 billion), Isiolo (Sh10 billion), Ndarugi II (Sh33 billion), Mwache (Sh15 billion), Kiandongoro (Sh12 billion), Soin Koru (Sh24 billion) and Kabasi (Sh2 billion).