EXPERT

EXPERT COMMENT: Hand over the mall so it can benefit our people

Government is not servicing the loan

In Summary

• The project has been given a clean bill of health by many institutions including the AG.

• We will summon top officials to shed light on the controversies.

 

 I have a statement coming up in the Senate. I am not concerned with the investigations. My concern is disruption of the lives of people who have paid to go into the mall, some almost two years ago. But they cannot move in because there is no proper handover. There's a dispute between the contractor and the government.

The government is not willing to service the loan on time and it has accrued a lot of interest. The contractor has completed his work, the government needs to hand over the mall to the Lake Basin Development Authority so it serves its purpose.

The more the negative publicity, the harder it will be to attract tenants and investors. This means no jobs. Who on earth would want to put their money where there is a wrangle?

 

I want the government to clarify when this mall will start benefitting residents.  There are mega projects like the Arror and Kimwarer dams that never took off after gobbling up to Sh21 billion. Here we are talking about Sh4.2 billion for a completed mall.  Why the interest?

I knew some people wanted the mall to accrue interest which the government would not pay so that they could auction it.

If the government knew of problems, why did they give the LBDA Sh800 million to clear the debt to the contractor? It would also be so foolish for the alleged procurement mess to bypass Parliament. They would have stopped the money. These are the questions the media should ask.

We shall summon many people, those who initiated the project, like three former chairmen. The first was Raphael Tuju. He would have to shed light on how the procurement was done. We would also invite Onyango Oloo to tell us what he found, together with the MDs.

I want to invite the Ministry of Public Works that had given a clean bill of health to the mall. Then the Attorney General and Auditor General who also gave it a clean bill of health.

The Senator for Kisumu county spoke to the Star.