Controversy surrounds procured APs’ houses in Nairobi
08 October 2014, 22:57
Nairobi – The National Assembly’s Public Accounts committee (PAC) is probing into single-sourcing acquisition of 300 house units for Administration Police (AP) officers by the Government in Nairobi’s Umoja Estate.
PAC’s Chair, Ababu Namwamba, said the Auditor General’s report revealing that the apartments which cost the taxpayer KES 2.3 billion raises critical questions of flouting the legal procurement process and possibility of being overpriced.
The controversies surrounding the acquisition of the flats is also manifested where the AP officers share the house units with civilians instead of having their own stand-alone blocks , a case Namwamba said it compromises the officers’ security.
“The tendering was to be done on competitively and the Office of the President’s single sourcing was irregular. This means one who pushed for the purchase of the houses was influential and PAC will lift the veils behind this property,” said Namwamba.
The 300 units situated in two courts namely, Amboseli with the APs’ 232 houses mixed with civilians, and Tsavo’s 68 houses which is entirely for officers cost KES 5 million for 2-bedroom, KES 6.8 million for 3-bedroom and KES 7.5 million for 4-bedroom apartments.
The apartments’ dilapidated condition such as licking of roofs, cracks along the walls due to poor workmanship by the contractor and the situation where officers share rooms separated by makeshift partitions revealed the APs’ poor living conditions in their new residence.
“Police officers sharing rooms separated by temporary partitions are unacceptable because this dehumanizes and robs them of their right to privacy. The licking roofs, seven officers sharing a house and children sleeping on wet floor causes frustration to police and this irregular procurement is a sign of the committed fraud,” said Namwamba.
“Proper housing is motivation for officers to discharge their duties. PAC is much concerned with the value of the procured apartment to the market prices and my committee is now fully informed. We want to know whether the taxpayers’ money was properly used,” added Namwamba who had toured the apartments.
PAC’s chair asserted that his committee will go for a retreat to deliberated on their findings before the Parliament resumes on October, 14 and thereafter table the report before the floor of the House.
Namwamba condemned East Gate contractor for poor workmanship in the construction of the procured apartments and warned other contractors in the housing market to consider the tenants’ safety by setting up high standard buildings.
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