Businessman denies links to Sh20m trash tenders

Wednesday, September 18th, 2019 00:00 |
Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko. Photo/File

A Nairobi businessman associated with three firms under investigations by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) for alleged corrupt dealings in the award of tenders in Nairobi City County has denied any wrongdoing.

This as the anti-graft grapples to unravel the puzzle of sh 20 million kickback wired into Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko’s personal account by a contractor allegedly hired by his administration.

Antony Otieno Ombok, alias Jamal, says he has never had any direct contract or tender with City hall instead, his companies are subcontracted by other firms to provide services to them.

Arbab Auto Limited, which is one of the eight firms being investigated by EACC over graft, Ombok disclosed is subcontracted by AMACO Insurance Company limited to repair Nairobi City county government-insured vehicles.

AMACO has also leased his car yard to park their insured accident vehicles, he says.

“No evidence to support the allegations that our client was involved in any tender at Nairobi City County government,” Jamal says in an affidavit to EACC drafted by his lawyer Dennis Joseck mare.

He continues, “There is no tender documents or contracts executed with the county government of Nairobi nor any direct payments made to our client by city hall,”

Ombok insists he does not have any business transaction with Governor Sonko’s administration.

According to him, the anti-graft body are on a “fishing expedition” insisting that the alleged sh 20 million bribed to Sonko was only a payout to a piece of land he had purchased from him in 2013.

People Daily has learnt that on September 5th, 2019, Ombok was summoned and presented to EACC detectives a sale agreement between him and Sonko over 34 acres piece of land in Mavoko purchased at a tune of 34M shillings.

Governor Sonko allegedly sold to Ombok way before Sonko became the Governor in August 2017.

As such the sh 20 million wired to Sonko’s account and claimed as kickbacks by EACC was untrue as it was a payment of the Mavoko land.

In 2017, the county Assembly’s watchdog committee, Public Accounts Committee (CPA) scrutinized all pending bills accrued by the previous administration and ordered that all legitimated debts owed since 2013 be cleared.

Amaco Insurance was among the firms owed by City hall a total of sh 100 million debt.

After City hall paid Amaco Insurance, in turn, paid one of the Ombok’s firms, Arbab Auto Limited,   a total of sh 20 million, of which he  paid Governor Sonko a balance of sh 20 million as part of the debt of the land purchased.

Also at the centre of investigations into multi-million-shilling county, tenders were also two firms, Toddy Civil Engineering Company Limited and Hardi Enterprises Limited, associated with businessman Antony Mwaura.

People Daily understands Mwaura was summoned by EACC to appear at its headquarters to explain, the circumstances under which he wired sh 3 million to Sonko’s account through his company Toddy Civil Engineering fixed account held at Equity Bank, Gigiri.

During the grilling session at EACC, Mwaura is understood to have presented an agreement between him and the governor for a five piece of land he leased from Sonko in Kwale County, where he had won a water tender through the Ministry of Water and Sanitation.

The deal was to pipe water from Marere River and pump to nearby villages at the cost of sh 426 million.

The contested 205 acres leased piece of land lies between the village and the river, and is co-owned by Mike Sonko and his wife Primose Mbuvi.

Mwaura, through his Toddy Civil Engineering Company leased 5 acres piece of land from Sonko family to help him pipe and pump water to the village through their land.

To owner part of his bargain, on December 12th, 2018, Mwaura through his Toddy Civil Engineering Company wired sh 3 million to Sonko’s personal account.

On the contrary, according to EACC, the sh 3 million was a bribe from Antony Mwaura to the governor as his  Company Hardi Enterprises Limited had business with cityhall to collect and dispose garbage.

Although, Toddy Civil Engineering Company is owned by Mwaura, it does not have any valid contract with City County as Hardi Enterprises Limited.

The company has 87 trucks that collect garbage in Nairobi and fuels  at High Energy Petroleum petrol station along Kangundo road which owned by Ombok hence the link between the two companies.

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