DCI reveals Ksh.2.7 billion scandal at Kenya Ports Authority


DCI reveals Ksh.2.7 billion scandal at Kenya Ports Authority
Containers are seen at the main port in the Kenyan coastal city of Mombasa March 7, 2013. REUTERS/Marko Djurica

The Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI) has begun a probe into what detectives now believe is a Ksh.2.7 billion tender scandal at the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA).

The probe sanctioned in August this year implicates top officials at the ports authority including KPA Managing Director Daniel Manduku who is accused of authorising irregular expenditures totaling to Ksh.2.73 billion.

Manduku, however, on Monday dismissed the allegations claiming they are being fronted by people interested in KPA tenders.

In three projects including Makongeni Goodshed Yard, Manufacture of Concrete Barriers and Kisumu Port Revitalization, Mr. Manduku and others are suspected to have breached procurement procedure.

An investigations file by the Economic and Commercial Crimes Unit of the DCI seen by Citizen TV has suggest that Manduku oversaw the preparation of bills of quantity for eight firms without requisition forms from the user — the inland container depot in Nairobi for the Makongeni Goodshed Yard  project.

Manduku, KPA General Manager in charge of Operations William Rutto, Senior Works Officer Anthony Muhanji, Works Officer Juma Chigulu and Principal Works Officer Bernard Nyobange are said to have colluded to divide the 2100 square meters yard belonging to Kenya Railways into 9 zones and awarded 8 contractors the concrete works.

The split termed unprocedural with the aim of avoiding open and competitive tendering process is believed to have cost the taxpayer Ksh.506 million.

Investigations reveal that the companies were paid in full despite not completing the job, as Kenya Railways reclaimed its land and demolished the concrete.

In the Kisumu Port Revitalization project, Ksh.800 million was shared by seven companies despite the works having been projected to cost Ksh.100 million.

Investigators say a top official at KPA was pushing for the seven companies to be awarded the tenders.

Procurement regulations were breached to award the seven companies the tenders with detectives reveal that documents were forged to sanitise the process. Records recovered from the KPA finance department show how the loot was shared.

Ponoma Constructions pocketed Ksh.205 million, Ricco Contractors bugged Ksh.108 million, while Ksh.129 million went to associated electricals, Yuaf Agencies took home Ksh.163 million while Stone Contractors pocketed Ksh.128 million tudor. Engineering Limited was paid Ksh.35 million and Kites Technicals Ltd is said to have taken home Ksh.33 million, according to the investigations report.

Suspects here include KPA boss Manduku, Mathews Amutu, who heads the port electrical works, Project Manager William Tenay, Head of Procurement Aza Dzengo, Principal Procurement Officer Ali Mwinjaka, Civil Technician Tom Okeyo and Directors of Stone Contractors.

Investigators believe that Manduku directed that a Ksh.1.4 billion tender for the construction of 17,940 concrete barriers be awarded to 10 companies without following the procurement regulations.

Two senior KPA officials have told investigators that there was no need for concrete barriers. Even then, the barriers were grossly overpriced from about Ksh.10,000 to Ksh.79,000 a piece.

Suspects here include, KPA MD Daniel Manduku, Senior Works Officer Anthony Muhanji and Works Officer Juma Chilugu.

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Story By Hassan Mugambi
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