17 January 2014

Kenya: NSSF Board Defends Sh5 Billion Tassia Tender

THE NSSF board has defended its decision to use an email to seek approval of Sh5 billion for infrastructural development in the controversial Tassia II scheme.

Appearing before the Committee on Labour of the National Assembly yesterday, board chairman Adan Mohammed said the move is legal and necessary in this digital era.

He dismissed assertions that the Federation of Kenya Employers' representative Jacqueline Mugo did not approve the expenditure as reported in the media.

Adan said Mugo is among the five members who approved the expenditure through the email circulated on December 18 last year.

FKE and Cotu have opposed the expenditure on grounds that it was not sanctioned by the board, where both are represented.

The cost of the project from Sh3.3 billion to Sh5 billion.

"NSSF is not aware of any objections to the award of the tender Sh5 billion. (Cotu Secretary General Francis) Atwoli never responded to the email nor did raise his objections and the Board misconstrued his silence to be consent," Adan said.

Apart from Mugo, others who approved the expenditure are Adan, Labour PS Ali Noor Ismail, Mutua Kilaka and the acting CEO Richard Langat.

Asked why the NSSF board decided to seek the approval of the expenditure through emails and not a full board meeting, Langat told the committee that it was necessary because the time frame of the tendering process was about to lapse.

"The procurement law gives the time frame within which every tendering process must be concluded. The time was about to lapse and it wouldn't have been possible to summon a full board meeting," he said.

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