COTU wants anti-graft agency to probe Tasia II project

COTU wants anti-graft agency to probe Tasia II project

The Central Organisation of Trade Unions (COTU) has challenged the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to fast-track investigations into the Ksh 5 billion Tassia II Infrastructure project. In a statement to media houses, COTU claimed that several individuals linked to the fraudulent approval of the project and whose payments were hurriedly made through email approval remain at large. The union also called for EACC to investigate how the Cabinet approved NSSF’s joint project with Private Partnership for Mavoko Municipality and Nairobi’s Kenyatta Avenue property development at a cost of Ksh 130 million when the Public Procurement Oversight Authority (PPOA) had advised otherwise. COTU also called for an inquiry on how the expansion works on the Hazina Towers suddenly moved from the initial Ksh 3.2 billion to Ksh 7.2 billion without NSSF Board of Trustees involvement and evaluation. “These are concerns still disturbing the Kenyan workers and it is only prudent that the EACC strives to avail to Kenyans reports on these issues,” read the statement in part. “COTU is keen on understanding who should bear responsibility for all these irregularities in which billions of workers’ funds have been committed.” COTU also praised the anti-graft commission for its recommendations to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to prefer abuse of office charges against suspended Lands Cabinet Secretary Kazungu Kambi for irregular appointments at the NSSF. “COTU (K) wishes to challenge the EACC to proceed as well and establish foremost those individuals that are culpable and remain at large.” The statement comes days after EACC recommended that suspended Labour CS Kazungu Kambi be charged over alleged graft. The EACC resubmitted its file on Kambi to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) after carrying out further investigations into the corruption allegations levelled him. Kambi, who stepped down from his position early in the year, is linked in corrupt dealings at the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) where he is said to have strongly supported the NSSF Tassia II project despite clear indications that the board of trustees did not approve the upward review of the project’s cost. COTU resilient in calling for investigations into dealings at the national Fund comes after new changes, ringed by acting Labour CS Raychelle Omamo saw the return on COTU Secretary General Francis Atwoli into the board. Atwoli was axed from the board by Kambi last year for allegedly failing to attend enough board sittings. The appointments also saw Kariithi Murage make it into the board of trustees and the revocation of Charity Seleina Kisotu who had been appointed by Kambi to head the board. The Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE) Executive Director Jacqueline Mugo, who was also removed from the board by Kambi, made a comeback as Patrick Onyango and Lyn Cherop got appointed.

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