Ruto on military equipment scam: My office does not procure for any ministry


Ruto on military equipment scam: My office does not procure for any ministry
File image of Deputy President William Ruto. PHOTO| COURTESY

In Summary

  • Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa, a perceived close ally of the DP, was last week arrested and detained over the fraudulent multi-billion shilling deal in which he is alleged to have invoked the Office of the Deputy President.
  • DP Ruto, however, taking to Twitter on Sunday, rubbished the reports terming them as “nonsense” sponsored in the media.

Deputy President William Ruto has stated that his office does not procure goods or services for any ministry after he was roped into a Ksh.39 billion military equipment scam.

Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa, a perceived close ally of the DP, was last week arrested and detained over the fraudulent multi-billion shilling deal in which he is alleged to have invoked the Office of the Deputy President.

DP Ruto, however, taking to Twitter on Sunday, rubbished the reports terming them as “nonsense” sponsored in the media.

“ODP does not procure for any ministry/department. Question: other than 23min in Annex, for months, which government offices involved in the ‘tender’ did the scammers visit? Did they access DOD? Who facilitated? Who did they meet? Get the truth. Forget the sponsored NONSENSE in media,” wrote the DP.

DP Ruto had previously distanced himself from Echesa’s woes blaming his political competitors for launching a smear-campaign against him.

“The desperation of my political competitors on their choreographed smear campaign against WSR is evident even for fools (whom we have a shortage for) to see,” he stated.

“Just wait and see where this will end up. Washindwe! Go for the fraudsters. Leave me to serve the nation.”

In a narrative depicting a movie script, Echesa is said to have approached foreign investors through mail introducing himself as a Kenyan politician who would hook them up with a lucrative Ksh.39.5 billion tender.

To show commitment, he is reported to have asked them to pay a firm known as Pizzle Consultancy $115,000 (Ksh.11.5 million) which he is alleged to have pocketed.

He later reportedly summoned the directors of the company into the country for a meeting at a top Nairobi hotel in the presence of people dressed in military uniform, one of them introducing himself to the investors as a General in need of the military equipment which were to be supplied to the Department of Defence.

The directors then arranged a trip for Echesa and three others to Poland, the headquarters of the company, to inspect the surveillance equipment.

It is here that he reportedly said he would receive Ksh.52 million upon the signing of the contract after approving the standards of the equipment.

On Thursday, February 13, the two investors – an Egyptian and an American – were reportedly taken to Harambee House Annex where the deal was to be signed in the Office of the Deputy President.

It is here that it struck them odd why the man who identified himself as General was dressed in a suit this time round.

They also said they never got to meet the Deputy President despite Echesa promising that the contract would be signed in his presence.

What baffled investigators is that the fictitious tender document found both in the Office of the Deputy President and Echesa’s car, bore the signature of Defence Cabinet Secretary Amb. Monica Juma among other senior ministry officials.

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Story By Ian Omondi
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