How Sh9bn Kemsa plot was nipped in the bud
What you need to know:
- MoH has failed to make public some companies that won tenders with Kemsa at the height of the pandemic.
- Detectives are still looking for the files of 25 companies that were awarded contracts.
- Getting details of these companies would have been easier had Kemsa and Afya House officials heeded the President’s call.
Corrupt government officials had plotted to cart away Sh9 billion from the scandal-ridden Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (Kemsa) before detectives halted the scheme.
Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) Chief Executive Twalib Mbarak said the public would have lost more money had the media not exposed the Sh7.8 billion scandal.
“Another Sh9 billion was to be paid out when we came in,” Mr Mbarak told the Kenya Editors Guild in Nairobi Tuesday.
“In between, letters of award were cancelled, saving the public a lot of money.”
As investigations continue, focus will also be on the Ministry of Health, which has failed to make public some companies that won tenders with Kemsa at the height of the pandemic as directed by President Uhuru Kenyatta on August 31.
Detectives are still looking for the files of 25 companies that were awarded contracts, but whose details mysteriously vanished, before a decision is made on who to charge.
Getting details of these companies would have been easier had Kemsa and Afya House officials heeded the President’s call.
The 30-day deadline is today, meaning the directive has largely been ignored.
This is the third time the ministry is ignoring the President’s order on making its procurement transparent.
Calls and messages to Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe and his Principal Secretary Susan Mochache went unanswered Tuesday.
The ministry was also tasked with developing a mechanism through which Kemsa procurement should be done online.
“This will enhance the highest level of scrutiny at all units of public administration and improve the management of resources,” the President said.
Executive Order Two of 2018 directed State entities “to maintain and continuously update and publicise through websites of public procuring entity, e-citizen, Public Procurement Regulatory Platforms, public notice boards, and/or official government publications details of their tenders”.
The information to be made public includes details of the suppliers, goods being procured, award date and contract period and the membership of the inspection committee that approved the quality and quantity of the products supplied.
But even as Afya House plays cat-and-mouse with State House over Covid-19 funds, investigators are closing in on corrupt officials.
The President gave the agencies 20 days to complete investigations on the scandal. This deadline passed last week.