Scandal: Kimwarer project wasn’t approved, Ouko reveals
A technical committee appointed by President Uhuru Kenyatta to look into the developments of Arror and Kimwarer dams projects in Elgeyo Marakwet County did not recommend cancellation of the ventures.
Infrastructure Principal Secretary Paul Maringa, who chaired the technical committee alongside quantity surveyor and engineers Benjamin Mwangi and John Muiruri said they recommended re-validation of the Kimwarer Dam and scaling down of Arror Dam projects.
Appearing before the Senate’s Justice and Legal Affairs Committee, the PS Maringa regretted the cancellation of Sh22.2 billion Kimwarer dam project arguing it should be re-looked afresh.
“The technical committee was objective in the assignment and gave professional technical advice. The report made a comparison between the two dams on the amount of land required for the purpose of prioritization,” PS Maringa told Nandi Senator Samson Cherarkey-led committee.
“I had a task to deliver and was working under a crush program. I picked the most qualified and competent. I was brought to the committee as the PS Infrastructure as part of my mandate that am in charge of all infrastructural projects, ” the PS observed.
Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen who read malice in President Kenyatta’s announcement on cancellation of the multibillion project took the PS to task to explain why he was only reporting about the matrix of the technical report and not the report itself.
“Why have you furnished us with the matrix of the report and not the report itself? Kipchumba who is Elgeyo Marakwet posed.
But the PS defended himself saying that there was only one report which was handed to the President and clarified that the Kimwarer dam was not cancelled but recommended to be relooked at.
“Arror was scaled down for the purpose of being made viable but we recommended that Kimwarer needs to done a re-validation,” he said
The Arror and Kimwarer Dams project are the subject of a court case facing more than 20 officials including National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich and his principal secretary.
The officials face several corruption related charges among them inflating the cost of the two dams that were to be constructed in Elgeyo Marakwet County.
However, President Kenyatta cancelled the Kimwarer Dam project for being technically and financially unfeasible as its cost had been exaggerated at Ksh.22.2 billion.
The investigation followed revelations that the projects were non-existent yet billions had been pumped into them.
The Arror dam is now expected to cost taxpayers a maximum of Sh15.4 billion and not Sh28.3 billion as earlier estimated.