The Civil Society Reference Group (CSRG) on Sunday, August 16, claimed that a consignment of medical equipment donated by Jack Ma through his Alibaba Foundations could have been sold to the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA)
"It is likely that national government agencies, county governments and private hospitals may have knowingly or unwittingly bought the same items from the devious and crooked individuals who seized the donations at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA)," CSRG Presiding Convener Suba Churchill stated.
He further challenged the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to publicise their findings on where the donations from the Chinese Billionaire ended up.
"Failure by the DCI to come clean on the whereabouts of the donation even after reports emerged that they had been stolen upon arrival at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport lends credence to the possibility that well connected tenderpreneurs may have seized the donations," Suba stated.Alibaba executive chairman Jack Ma talks to young entrepreneurs and students at the University of Nairobi, Kenya. September 2019.File
CSRG went on to call for fresh investigations into the disappearance of assorted medical equipment donations which included 100,000 face masks and 20,000 Covid-19 testing kits.
The donations arrived in the country on March 24, in an Ethiopian Airlines cargo plane, only for the huge consignment to disappear without any official statement to date as to whether it was ever found.
CSRG urged the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) looking into the procurement graft at KEMSA to dig deeper into companies that were irregularly awarded tenders to supply PPEs, more specifically where the dubious merchants got their supply.
"The shadowy companies that benefited from KEMSA tenders may have supplied what had been donated to Kenyans for free," CSRG pointed out.
It was further highlighted that in Homa Bay, Kisumu, Siaya and Busia counties, companies contracted to supply Covid-19 medical equipment and renovate hospital facilities do not have proper registration documents and are not listed in the official registry of companies.
Speaking to the media on the same day, Council of Governors (CoG) Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya urged the national government to allow counties to procure medical equipment from a supplier of their choice.
He made it clear that it was important for the DCI and EACC to be given room to conclude their investigations.
On August 14, KEMSA commercial director Eliud Muriithi and procurement director Charles Juma faced disciplinary action alongside CEO Jonah Mwangi Manjari.Kenya Medical Supplies Agency CEO Jonah Manjari addresses the media at Sarova Panafric Hotel on April 15, 2019.Daily Nation
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