Kenya: Nakuru MCAs Put Rogue Contractors on Notice

27 February 2020

Nakuru Members of County Assembly (MCAs) have put rogue contractors on notice. The MCAs have accused some politically connected contractors of undermining multi-billion-shilling development projects in the 55 wards.

The ward reps claimed that the rule requiring contractors to have a guaranteed bond, has never been implemented by the executive despite being passed in 2015. The MCAs criticised the Nakuru County government leadership for allowing cartels to hold their projects at ransom.

ROGUE CONTRACTORS

They alleged that due to increasing number of rogue contractors, the completion of projects worth Sh3 billion have been delayed.

The 78-member House on Tuesday passed a motion that will compel the county to profile and blacklist all the contractors who have failed to complete their projects within the set timelines without justifiable reasons. The motion was sponsored by Viwandani MCA Eric Gichuki.

The ward reps said the contractors have failed to adhere to the provisions of section 135 of Public Procurement and Disposal Act.

Naivasha East MCA Stanley Karanja said the motion ought to be developed into a Bill to tame contractors who have no capacity to execute multibillion-shilling projects.

"Interestingly, some of these briefcase contractors come armed with certificates yet they have never done any capital project. They are only known in the corridors of the executive," said Mr Karanja.

SHODDY WORK

He added: "Some briefcase contractors have never been vetted anywhere yet they are awarded contracts worth Sh10 million."

Mr Karanja wondered how such contractors qualify for big tenders yet they do not have machinery on the ground. The MCA said some contractors were avoiding them after doing shoddy work.

"The completion certificate of any project at the ward must be signed by the area MCA and a representative of the ward project committee before the contractor is paid," said Mr Karanja.

Gilgil MCA Jane Wangui Ngugi said the executive had allowed the contractors to begin work without commitments to complete the contracts through a bank-guaranteed bond.

"The bond requirement was passed in 2015 and has never been implemented and that is why cartels masquerading as contractors are getting contracts and later sell them to other contractors and thus delaying the completion of work," said Ms Ngugi.

She said a project in her ward stalled in 2016. She said some contractors are paid even before doing the job. She claimed that some projects are approved in advance by engineers while the intention fee of three per cent that should be paid to contractors after six months is paid after one month.

Deputy Speaker Samuel Tonui said it was wrong for contractors work without the MCAs' knowledge.

Molo MCA Michael Njoroge Sonis said the executive was to blame for approving a fake list of contractors. He said that some projects dating back to 2018 are yet to be completed.

FAULTED THE EXECUTIVE

Soin MCA Irene Chebichi faulted the executive for sidelining the MCAs during the launch of the projects saying an Early Childhood Development project in her ward for the financial year 2018/2019 is yet to be completed.

Deputy Speaker Samuel Tonui said MCAs and ward project representatives used to sign minutes of the projects but this is no longer the case.

Leader of Minority Peter Palanga blamed the executive for issuing completion certificates to projects that do not add value the residents.

Kiamaina MCA Wahome Jambo Kenya said projects dating back from 2014 have not been implemented due to lack of finances by contractors.

Lake View Ward MCA Karanja Mburu accused the current administration of sleeping on the job. He claimed that it had had failed to guide contractors according to the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act.

"This Act has all the framework that is needed to black list rogue contractors but the current government is sleeping on the job," said Mr Mburu.

Maiella ward MCA Kamanu Gathariki said the county should devise measures to recover public funds from greedy contractors who were unable to complete their work.

The executive denied the claims saying it is now compelling the contractors to sign bank guaranteed bonds before they are awarded the contracts.

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