EACC Invited to probe purchase of Ksh 670m National Bank Building as Mandago deny bribery claims

EACC invited to probe purchase of National Bank Building

Uasin Governor Jackson Mandago has come under intense pressure over the planned purchased of Ksh 670m National Bank Building by the county government even as the embattled county boss deny bribery claims.

The approval was passed by the county assembly on Thursday, which now paves way for the purchase of the building considered old, dilapidated and with no value for money.

However the intended purchase has elicited uproar more than the second term governor had anticipated.

Leaders led by Kapseret constituency Member of Parliament Oscar Sudi have called on the governor to halt the purchase until the Covid-19 pandemic is over to allow for public participation.

Following the public outcry, EACC has now moved in to query the purchase of National Bank Building that residents say its cost was not only inflated, but lacked public participation.

This comes as some of the residents threaten to move to court to stop the purchase of the exorbitantly price building.

The National Bank Building has come into stark contrast with the recently unveil White House Governor’s office in Machakos built at a cost of Ksh 350m.

While Machakos governor’s office has attracted media attention for its stellar and low cost, Mandago’s National Bank Building bears all the resemblance of corruption. This is according to area residents.

A valuation report presented to the county assembly by Lands CEC Eng. Nelson Maritim in June 2019 showed the total cost as Ksh 400m. How the total cost came to Ksh 570m was a question the soft-spoken CEC was unable to answer.

The valuation report seen by Daily Star also indicated the acreage as 3.3 hectares whereas the actual size the building stands on is 0.373 ha. This raises questions as to whether there was conspiracy to defraud from the word or the county government could be dealing with two different sets of properties.

But close to one year later, the cost has risen to Ksh 670m with Ksh 100m said to be budgeted for renovations.

But more appalling is how a group of MCAs were bribed Ksh 200,000 at a town hotel to approve the purchase. Two MCAs who requested anonymity confirmed the meeting saying indeed the governor implored upon them to approve the purchase and in return the governor would pat their shoulders with a token of appreciation which they received upfront.

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