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Cowboy contractor lands mega county tenders – Weekly Citizen

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After a five-year push-and-pull over the status of the Sh4.1 billion of Kitale Teaching and Referral Hospital, finally the contractors who undertook the facility’s works have passed a clean bill of health.
The committee of health of the Trans-Nzoia county assembly that had declared Blink-Studio Contractors guilty of the works at the referral hospital has changed tune and given the Nairobi-based contractors the green light to continue with the completion work at the hospital.
Even as the Kiminini MP Chris Wamalwa agitates for the hospital to be renamed Masinde Muliro Teaching and Referral Hospital as he seeks to succeed Governor Patrick Khaemba, the county assembly’s chair of the health committee under MCA Daniel Kaburu says the problems at the yet to be completed hospital are outside the control of the contractor.

Khaemba

MCA for Sinyereri ward Daniel Kaburu like Governor Khaemba himself instead is urging for a probe from the state investigating agencies to unravel any malpractices. The hospital has so far consumed nearly Sh2 billion.
Addressing the media in Kitale, Kaburu accompanied by health committee members also distanced his members from an intended impeachment motion targeted at Governor Khaemba by the Hospital ward MCA Eric Wafula.
Kaburu’s new stand appears to have sparked a standoff within the Ford-Kenya party which is plotting to back him to replace the Keiyo ward MCA Emmanuel Waswa as the minority leader after the latter had a spat with the party leader Moses Wetang’ula over the party’s recent grassroots polls in the county. Kaburu has been a bitter critic of the county boss and as the powerful chair of the health committee spearheaded the removal of the health CEC Christine Tanguli who survived impeachment before she was transferred to the lands and physical planning portfolio.

moses wetangula

Governor Khaemba had to go for the rescue of Tanguli by reshuffling her before the impeachment motion of the Kaplamai MCA Elkanah Kagunda could reach the house and since then she has taken a low profile, perhaps to rekindle her hopes of recontesting the women representative seat she lost to Janet Nangabo in 2017.
The health docket is headed by Clare Wanyama who was moved from the public service management. It now remains to be seen how both the Kaburu and Waswa camps will play ball to Khaemba’s government with the Sitatunga MCA having already sided with Khaemba’s new project of opening the Kitale Business Centre as the governor completes his second ad last term in 2022.
It now remains to seen how the Khaemba administration will face off with several projects at hand to complete at the same time before the

MP Chris Wamalwa

expiry of his period in 2022 but one of his confidant county chief officer John Meng’wa is optimistic that the projects could be realised with more funding from the national government and increased allocation by the local county assembly.
Sitatunga MCA led a team of colleagues to Nairobi to inspect machineries and facilities for the proposed Kitale Business Centre following the inauguration of the Kitale town service management board.
The board is chaired by Martin Waliaula who is also the chairman of the Kitale chapter of Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The board faces a Herculean task considering that most of the members have no experience and were only appointed to balance political and communal equations.
In the new development, the Blink-Studio Contractors were being favoured to undertake the works at the proposed Kitale Business Centre as Kaburu prepares for an onslaught on those against governor Khaemba.
Kaburu’s stand is seen to have reflected the message of the county assembly speaker Joshua Werunga who recently called for respect among all elected leaders saying motions of impeachment are not solutions to leadership problems of the county. The move seems also to have rattled political feathers in some circles and caused for fresh realignments.
According to Kaburu, the county assembly is not the right body to conduct investigations into the activities of Blink-Studio Contractors as this would be marred by political witchhunt as had been the case in the past when the project commenced almost seven years ago.
To the Sitatunga MCA, the right channel would be agencies such as EACC and DCI to carry out probe into the hospital’s works and law implemented fully. “The contractors have never been blacklisted,” he said adding that the county assembly ought to allocate more funds for the completion of the hospital.
He also dismissed as propaganda that Governor Khaemba had been arrested by EACC sleuths over allegations of corruption. The “new-born” Kaburu seemed to be laying the whole blame of propaganda on the county government on the Hospital ward counterpart Wafula for allegedly falling out with Governor Khaemba for his failures in his ward.
As Khaemba celebrates to the newly-found alliance of MCAs, the question is: Will this give him a chance to complete the Kitale Referral Hospital even as he agitates for the county assembly to rename it Masinde Muliro Referral Hospital?
How about the status of his other mega projects of Kitale Stadium, Kitale Bus Terminus and the Kitale main market? And for how long will Kaburu sustain the all-drawn storm against Khaemba’s county government?



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