GDC, Kenya Pipeline chiefs arrested over graft as Isiolo governor hides

The anti-graft agency yesterday arrested the chief executives of Geothermal Development Company (GDC), Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC) and National Water Conservation and Pipeline Corporation (NWCPC) who will be charged today and tomorrow in court. 

Isiolo Governor Godana Doyo went into hiding and the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) officers were by yesterday evening pursuing him. 

“All the suspects were arrested this morning by the EACC, processed and released on cash bail of Sh100,000 each and will appear before the anti-corruption court in Milimanifor taking of plea,” said the EACC in a statement.

The arrested include suspended GDC managing director Silas Simiyu and other eight senior officers and members of tender committee, who have been blamed for inflating rig moving charges. 

Others are GDC suspended acting managing director Godwin Mwawongo, company secretary Praxidis Saisi, general manager drilling operations Michael Mbevi and tender committee members, including Abraham Saat, Peter Omenda, Caleb Mbaya, Bruno Linyiru and Nicholas Weke. 

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An earlier report from the EACC said the entire tender board should be jointly charged with abuse of office and must be surcharged to refund all money lost during the tender award.

The EACC said the tender committee should be probed for awarding Bonfide Clearing and Forwarding a contract to move geothermal rigs and other equipment in 40 lots, with each costing Sh42 million, in the Menengai drilling area within a radius of about 500 metres, bringing the total cost to Sh1.7 billion.

The officials were accused of inflating the rig movement charges from Sh15 million to Sh42million per rig, totalling Sh1.7 billion. 

The group will be arraigned today. The EACC also said it had arrested four KPC officials including suspended managing director Charles Tanui, chief manager technical Elias Karumi, chief engineer instrumentation and control Josphat Sirma and director of Redline Ltd Ngatia Ndung’u.

The group is also expected to appear in court today. The anti-graft agency has been investigating the KPC officials over millions of shillings said to have been paid to suspected companies in shady tendering deals. Mr Tanui was also being investigated for inflating purchase of land by KPC that forced him to step aside.

 Those arrested from (NWCPC) include the managing director Evans Ngibuini, procurement oversight committee members George Sar, Mustafa Aman, James Bundi and tender committee including members Justus Wabuyabo and John Musyoka.
They are expected in court tomorrow.

SOURCE: BUSINESS DAILY