Government re-awards tender for Ksh.36.9 billion Thwake dam


Government re-awards tender for Ksh.36.9 billion Thwake dam
Water Cabinet Secreatary Eugene Wamalwa adresses stakeholders,the government has signed a contract for the construction of Thwake Dam

The government on Wednesday signed a Ksh.36.9 billion contract for construction of Thwake Dam in Kitui and Makueni counties.

Thwake Dam, a project under the Vision 2030 blueprint is expected to be the largest dam in East Africa upon completion.

Speaking during a meeting with Kitui County Governor Charity Ngilu on Wednesday, Water and Irrigation Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa said that the dam will provide 681 million cubic metres of water to people in the rural areas of Kitui and Makueni.

“Thwake dam shall irrigate 100,000 acres, generate 20 megawatts of power and create 8,000 jobs. It will be 10 times bigger than Ndakaini dam,” said CS Wamalwa.

The CS further said that 9158 acres of land will be acquired at a cost of Ksh.3.55 billion for the project. The land acquisition is expected to affect 1792 residents of Kitui and Makueni counties.

“My ministry has paid Ksh.2.58 billion to 1,563 Project Affected Persons (PAPs). Plans to pay the remaining 229 PAPs are already in motion,” said CS Wamalwa.

Contract controversy

This is the second time that a contract for the construction of the dam is being signed.

The Public Procurement Administrative Review Board (PPARB) in April reversed the decision by former Irrigation Principal Secretary Paul Nduati to award the Ksh.62.3 billion tender to the second lowest bidder, Sinohydro Tianjin Engineering Limited.

The board faulted Mr. Nduati for ignoring advise from the Attorney General and the African Development Bank (AfDB) which was among the financiers of the project. It ordered the PS to award the tender to China Gezhouba Construction Group Corporation (CGGC), the lowest bidder.

The awarding of the tender had put CS Wamalwa and Mr. Nduati on a collision course with the former saying that that the taxpayer would cough up Ksh.3 billion by failing to award the tender to the lowest bidder.

 

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Story By Wahome Gitonga
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