The taxman has zeroed in on Daniel Wamahiu over unpaid value-added tax and income tax remittance worth close to Sh327 million. Wamahiu, a former chairman of Kenya Pipeline Company is being sought over ownership of several companies that did business with Geothermal Development Company during the 2013 to 2017 financial years. During his tenure at KPLC, the tycoon was involved in suspicious business deals and fronted various firms to win lucrative tenders. The controversial allocation of KPC land to Amaco Insurance was the tycoon brainchild. Wamahiu is a close associate of deputy president William Ruto. He is a frequent visitor at Weston Hotel. His company recently got a multibillion contract with the Kenya Urban Roads Authority. Also under probe is his bank accounts spread across six financial institutions running into billions. It is suspected one of his dollar accounts is used in money laundering.
This however was not without drama as some junior officers at Kenya Urban Roads Authority openly complained of the tender award. Weekly Citizen has information, the Kura tenders awarded to Wamahiu were highly inflated forcing a section in procurement to raise eyebrows. The tycoon during the Uhuruto best days was untouchable and boasts to be funding Ruto presidential bid 2022. The businessman has been holding high-level meetings with Nyeri professionals to map out strategies for 2022. He sees himself as the next Nyeri governor or the next Roads and Infrastructure CS or Energy CS if Ruto wins the presidency and forms the next government. The suave businessman has excellent contacts at the top echelons of the Judiciary and is always seen wining and dining with Supreme Court judges, those in Court of Appeal and High Court.
It is not known his interest in associating with judges but many see suspicion. Wamahiu controls most Nyeri MPs who must lie low or he threatens to sponsor opponents in their constituencies. One MP was heard pleading with him to spare him. The first-term MP says he was asked to beg Wamahiu if he expected mercy from him. The cowboy contractor has no time for Governor Mutahi Kahiga whom he says is not educated. The tycoon according to sources has been funding deputy governor Caroline Karungu to undermine her boss. Wamahiu was last week in panic upon learning the government was also investigating Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua on matters relating to money laundering and tax evasion. The MP banks’ accounts were frozen after Assets Recovery Agency petitioned Nairobi Milimani Court.
Five companies linked to the MP and his co-directors have been blocked from operating accounts at Rafiki Microfinance Bank. Rigathi operates three accounts at Rafiki Microfinance Bank under his name. His company Wamunyoro Investment named after his family member has two accounts. Not spared are his companies, namely Technical Supplies and Services Kenya Limited. The said firms are accused of siphoning billions of shillings from Nyeri county ever since the heyday of his late brother who was governor then. When his brother was ailing, the MP was a defacto governor and called shots including manipulating the award of tenders. Other companies associated with the MP that are in trouble include Crystal Kenya Limited, Jenne Enterprises and Encartar Diagnostics Limited. They are all operated at Liaison House, along State House Road, according to documents filed in court.
The MP is accused of colluding with Nyeri county government officials and the state’s department for irrigation to siphon taxpayers’ money through his companies and that of his proxies. At Nyeri county, Rigathi is said to have employed his henchmen in the procurement department during the reign of his late brother Gachagua as governor. Back to tycoon Wamahiu, he has been desperate to withdraw money from his accounts, raising eyebrows. A member of the Civil Engineering Contractors Association, Wamahiu has registered offshore companies that he claims to hold his 2022 campaign kitty and that of Ruto.
CS Macharia confirms Kinoti as KURA boss – Weekly Citizen
The much anticipated interviews and recruitment of Kenya Urban Roads Authority (KURA) were conducted transparently, the infrastructure Cabinet Secretary has confirmed. Engineer Murira Kinoti emerged the high in percentage in a vigorous interviews conducted by the board.
Macharia told the Citizen Weekly that he was impressed by the interviews by the board and engineer Kinoti’s appointment starts with immediate effect. Its imperative to note that it was Kinoti who has initiated major programs in Kura including Roads Annuity programs and the PPP for maintenance of roads in the Counties. During his tenure as acting Director General, the authority widened its road network in all the forty seven counties and enable to achieve 80 percent Vision 2030 and agenda four all intended to propel Kenya into a medium- income level in the next decade. Kinoti initiated improvement of non-motorized transport, installation of street and traffic lights, guards rail, traffic signs and other amenities.
Kinoti has been advocating for the establishment of cost rate regulations in the infrastructure sector to provide guidelines and reduce cost overruns. The Director-General have been pushing for the public to get better value for money in road projects. He has been appealing to indigenous contractors to up their came by doing perfect work and compete with foreign contractors fairly.
Kinoti holds Master in Business Administration Degree(Corporate Management) and a Bachelor of Civil Engineering Degree from University of Nairobi. In a Statement to Newsrooms, the infrastructure Cabinet Secretary James Wainaina Macharia congratulated engineer Silas Kinoti for his appointment adding that he is confident that Kinoti’s ability to perform due to his wealth experience. At the helm of the Authority Kinoti will be tasked with management of all public roads in Cities and Municipalities in the Country.
How rogue chief officers fleece Vihiga county – Weekly Citizen
Governor Wilber Ottichilo has perfected the art of launching ghost projects, where a select group of chief officers is milking the county coffers dry in a way that besieged Kirinyaga governor Anne Waiguru can only admire, it is claimed. Take for instance the department of agriculture that Pamela Busungu, a senior face among chief officers, has taken complete control of and is even signing for some of its tenders at the comfort of her bedroom. The department of agriculture lined up a total of 54 projects with a budget of Sh380 million, and they say 44 projects worth Sh219 million were completed and paid.
The county paid Magoya Agrotech and Produce Enterprises Sh23,800,000 to supply and deliver planting fertilizer and a further Sh21,080,000 for top dressing fertilizer, which was delivered to sub-counties from where farmers bought it. It further paid Western Seed Company Sh5,928,410 to supply and deliver certified maize seeds. However, Busungu contracted Navana Tours and Travel Limited to load and offload the fertilizers and maize seeds at a cost of Sh2,078,720, a company that was also paid Sh 5,600,000 to transport the same and a further Sh3 million to transport planting fertilizer. Sources at the county indicated Navana Tours is closely associated with Busungu, who has blessings from the top seat, and the proceeds from these illegal payments alone saw her buy a new Toyota Fielder car, and buy land in Kakamega.
The fertilizer and maize seeds would then be sold to 34,000 farmers at a cost of 500 per person, with the county raising Sh17,000,000, and consequently being unable to supply the same farmers with the implements this year. The department has listed as having partially completed Mukhalakhala slaughterhouse to 90pc, a slaughterhouse that former governor Moses Akaranga left while being operational. Mbogolo Valley Enterprises Limited has already been paid Sh4,586,402 for the completion of the Mukhalakhala slaughterhouse. Mwitoko Fish Farm is the main cash cow for the department, having gobbled about Sh37 million but its profits to the region are still at the planning level. Despite the farm having had electricity since when Ottichilo introduced it under the Economic Stimulus Programmes while still an MP, the department has also paid Sh1,366,726 to Pong Agencies Ltd for electrical installation works.
Navana Tours and Travel Ltd has also been paid Sh300,000 for fish feeds transportation, which was procured from Sigma Feeds Limited and paid for supply and delivery at Sh4,230,000. The department has also listed among its achievements as having distributed 20,000 coffee seedlings to farmers and 30,000 tea seedlings. This was purchased for Sh5,706,900 for supply and delivery of 20,000 avocado and tea seedlings by Rosanetta Limited and Sh1,900,000 paid to Emmima International Limited for coffee seedlings. However, on the ground, only 2000 coffee seedlings were given to farmers and less than 3000 tea seedlings given, which has been protested by Mudete Tea Factory that controls tea dealings in the county. The department procured a coffee pulping machine at a cost of Sh1.9 million, which on normal market rates, it goes at about Sh500,000, and has never pulped any coffee, two years down the line as there is no supply.
Construction of Serem Slaughter House by Watiti Construction Limited at a cost of Sh8,716,083 is also under sharp focus, with the department having also procured honey processing machines through Admido Agencies Ltd at Sh1,920,000 but has not seen farmers who benefited. The department of public service is also under sharp focus as it still owes Span Ventures Limited Sh75.8 million for construction of a high levelled-corruption data centre whose price has been overpriced five times over, having already paid them Sh19 million. The office of the governor is always under renovation, Westwood General Supplies Limited having been paid Sh1.5 million last year to do the same. The department of transport paid for supply and delivery of 10,000litres Fire Engine by Pewin Motors Limited at a cost of Sh46,078,584 and further supplied Rapid Response Vehicle at Sh15,721,375. The same contractor was awarded a further Sh11,519,646, for the firefighting engine delivery. Broadcore Construction Company was paid Sh6,434,737 for construction of mechanical workshop at Manyatta, which is incomplete and has never been used since 2018.
Dossier that forced Uhuru to drop Duale – Weekly Citizen
Details of why Uhuru Kenyatta bowed down to pressure to drop Garissa Township MP Aden Duale as the leader of majority can finally be revealed. The vocal MP lost his post in a Jubilee Party parliamentary group meeting that barely lasted 22 minutes though a majority of legislators had heaped praises on him, for his outstanding performance in pushing the ruling party’s agenda in the house and outside. He was replaced by Kipipiri MP Amos Kimunya, a one-time Finance minister in the Mwai Kibaki government. Insiders revealed that the president was initially reluctant to let Duale, who was his chief defender in parliament, go even after his kitchen cabinet questioned the Garissa Township MP’s loyalty due to his opposition to the Building Bridges Initiative and attacks on government even on the floor of the house. Before the parliamentary group meeting, the Pastoralists Parliamentary Group had come out to defend Duale against an onslaught led by Kieni MP Kanini Kega.
The legislators who included Garissa senator Yusuf Haji even offered to mediate in seeking an amicable resolution. Others who petitioned the president to spare Duale included Mandera senator Mohamed Mohamud who termed the Garissa MP’s seven-year leadership in the national assembly as outstanding having done a great job in driving the Jubilee agenda. In his defence, Duale had also lashed out at Kega, who was collecting MPs’ signatures to impeach him, accusing him of perfecting the art of extortion to solicit favours from him and his friends in exchange for the withdrawal of the motion. Insiders add that it is these achievements that were stopping the president from dropping him before a detailed dossier was presented to the head of state by security organs linking Duale to a web of corruption and his brother Abdi Yakub Duale.
The dossier detailed how the former secondary teacher who was inducted into politics by Raila Odinga used his position as majority leader to amass wealth estimated to be over Sh5 billion. With his brother Yakub, they use a firm Concordia building and Civil Engineering Company to manipulate state agencies to award them lucrative tenders. Using the proceeds, they have invested heavily in the middle East and own a hotel. The dossier detailed how the most vocal defender of Uhuru’s government who earned the tag sycophant used his position to coerce parastatal bosses and other government agencies to award companies associated with him or owned by his cronies lucrative tenders. Surprisingly, Duale family members boast to have influence at Ethics Anti Corruption Commission and Office of Director Of Public Prosecutions hence untouchables.
In return while majority leader, he would shield parastatal bosses from being probed by parliament or influence reports once they were summoned by the MPs. The report that shocked the president stated that while not directly soliciting for favours, Duale would front his brother, Noor Barre and that explains how they expanded their businesses in Garissa, Nairobi and Mombasa and even expanded to neighbouring countries such as Somali and South Sudan. In Garissa, Duale and his brother own the Nomad Resort, the second upmarket hotel in the town besides other commercial ventures, which include the affiliate Nomad Hotel in Nairobi’s Eastleigh. The report revealed that Duale, who was born on June 15 1967 and is married to the daughter of retired General Mahmoud Mohammed, one of two families who own and control most of Garissa’s wealth, now lives like a king, owning a multimillion house in the posh Runda estate. He is thus an in-law to Dpp boss Noordin Hajj son the senator Hajj.
The report revealed that Duale as leader of majority put up a four-storey building called Lilac Centre in Garissa town which is managed by his brother, Dubow Bare Duale and has also been using Medina Chemicals to supply veterinary products in the North-Eastern region, South Sudan and Somalia. He also purchased a cattle ranch at the Coast of Kenya. The dossier further raised the possibility that Duale could be holding Somali and Kenyan citizenship though in the past he has denied holding dual citizenship. The claims of Duale holding dual citizenship first resurfaced during the vetting of Mwende Mwinzi for appointment as the ambassador to South Korea. The Garissa Township MP then claimed he was being blackmailed by those he termed ‘busybodies’ after he refused to facilitate Mwinzi’s approval. Insiders add that the dossier detailed how Duale owns Concordia Building and Civil Engineering Company Limited which has won multi-billion-shilling tender mystery since he was appointed the Majority Leader.
The ownership of the company, the report added, put him in conflict with procurement laws, which prohibit state officers from doing business with the government. Besides Aden Bare Duale, Concordia Building and Civil Engineering Company Limited another director is Abdi Yakub Duale. Insiders add that attached to the dossier handed to Uhuru were media reports that exposed how Duale and Yakub formed the company under Certificate of Incorporation number 144127, given by SM Ndisya for the Registrar of Companies, in 2013 after he was named the majority leader. The company went in to bag its first big contract worth Sh185 million, to partition an office belonging to the Geothermal Development Corporation. The dossier contains minutes of a meeting dated September 12 2014 and attended by Aden Bare Duale, Abdi Yakub Duale and Marian Mohammed Hassan, along with lawyer Fredrick Orego, in which Duale resigned as director and transferred his shares to Marian Mohamed Hassan.
Among the mega projects the company carried out are the improvement of commuter rail stations in Nairobi, construction of Rural Electrification Authority under CEO Peter Mbugua of its storage facilities, construction of Garissa Town water supply systems, and the failed Mitubiri Landfill project. The four projects were worth Sh1.9 billion. The company was also awarded a Sh190 million contract for a water supply project under the Last Mile project being carried out by Kenya Power in Garissa. Concordia was also among the two firms awarded a Sh2 billion contract to build the Mitubiri Landfill project in Murang’a county, which the government later pulled out of after protests from residents. It also in April 2016, bagged Sh573 million contract to improve the Kahawa and Kikuyu railway stations. Other contracts Concordia bagged included the building of REA storage facilities in Mariakani worth Sh164 million, and maintenance of the Garissa-Mbalambala Road (Sh18 million).
Others were maintenance of Mwingi-Madogo Road (Sh143 million), maintenance of Kaya-Sakuna Road (Sh18 million), maintenance of Mtwapa water drainage systems (Sh277 million), and maintenance of roads in Garrisa Town (Sh6 million). The firm is engaged by the National Irrigation Authority formerly National Irrigation Board in multi-millions constructions of dams. But what annoyed powers be was the fact, Duale associated firms were evading taxes running into billions at Kenya Revenue Authority. Insiders added that the dossier also linked Duale to the importation of -sugar from Brazil that was imported via the Kismayu port and smuggled in through the porous Somalia border. It stated that there were reasons to believe that Duale was the person named in the report titled ‘Sweet secrets: Sugar smuggling and State formation in Kenya-Somalia borderlands’ by Prof Jacob Rasmussen of Denmark’s Roskilde University which blamed official neglect of the sugar sector in western Kenya and marginalization of the country’s northern region for the smuggling.
Those who were cited as sugar smugglers included a former governor and about 70 Somali businessmen operating in Kismayu, Garissa and Nairobi. The dossier stated that it was not a coincidence when Duale attacked the government for allegedly targeting small Somali sugar sellers instead of going for big importers in the illicit sugar war when police impounded contraband sugar in Eastleigh. It states the then Leader of Majority was protecting his interests. The report further reminded the President that when police impounded contraband sugar in Eastleigh Aldai MP Cornelly Serem, a close ally of Duale, named the president’s brother, Muhoho, as one of the importers of illicit sugar in a move that was meant to pour cold water on the war of corruption. The dossier further points out that the Dadaab refugee camp, close to Garissa in northern Kenya, is one of the major hubs for the trade with hundreds of thousands of clients and there is no way operations could go on there without Duale’s knowledge.
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