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Chiloba sanctioned Sh6.6b Kiems kits tender, IEBC says

Mercy Mwai @wangumarci

The woes bedeviling sacked Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chief executive Ezra Chiloba continued to deepen yesterday.

The commission told Parliament Chiloba single-handedly sanctioned the Sh6.6 billion tender for the procurement of the Kenya Integrated Elections Management Systems (Kiems) kit.

IEBC  acting chief executive Marjan Hussein and commissioner Boya Molu told the MPs  that Chiloba authorised direct procurement of kits used during the General Election and repeat presidential poll.

Commission records indicate French IT firm OT-Morpho was paid Sh4.1 billion  for the supply of 45,000 kits used in the August 8 General Election and Sh2.1 billion for the same kits  that were used for the repeat presidential election on October 26.

The revelations came on the day that the commission tabled documents before the MPs showing how it with the authority of Chiloba, spent another Sh1.8 billion on procurement of various goods and services at inflated prices.

Goods paid for

According to the documents, among the goods paid for are matchboxes at Sh2.02 million for the 45, 000 polling stations, poling day diaries Sh7.6 million, rubber bands Sh6 million, and calculators for Sh43.9 million.

Others include packaging tapes (Sh178, 350), rubber stamp pads (Sh4.5 million), rubber stamp (Sh5.8 million )and marker pens (Sh3.9 million).

Another beneficiary of the tenders is Wander Joy Party World, that was paid Sh7.6 million as it was the event organiser for the national election conference.

“The use of direct procurement method was duly approved by the accounting officer who was  Chiloba,” Marjan told the committee.

Appearing before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chaired by Opiyo Wandayi, Marjan told the legislators that all the tenders were sanctioned by Chiloba.

According to him, the commissioners led by the chairperson Wafula Chebukati, were not involved and, therefore, there was no resolution to that effect.

Marjan explained that the commissioners only had a meeting where they played an oversight role which included approving the procurement plan but did not directly engage in the matter. Committee members questioned how the commission  allowed one person to sanction tenders worth billions of shillings.

Wandayi said Chiloba  will be summoned to appear before the committee to shed light on some of the issues raised even as he ordered Hussein—who is expected appear again today—to be accompanied by Chebukati.

Suna East MP Junet Mohammed demanded to know whether it makes sense for Chiloba to sanction  the procurement of kits worth billions of shillings without the approval of the commission.”

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