NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 26 – Jubilee legislators are now blaming architects of the infamous Goldenberg and Anglo-Leasing scandals of frustrating the construction of the multi-billion Standard Gauge Railway project.
The MPs led by National Assembly Leader Aden Duale on Saturday said they are convinced that the unnamed Anglo-Leasing masterminds are “making noise” hoping that the tender awarded to a Chinese company will be cancelled for re-advertisement.
“We as leaders in jubilee want to state clearly that Uhuru and Ruto must come out and condemn and expose these crooks who are out to sabotage the railway project which will save Kenyans a lot of money,” he said, “we know they are holed up in posh hotels in Nairobi. They must be flushed out so that the project can go on.”
They claimed that Nandi Member of Parliament Alfred Keter who has been vocal on opposing the tender, alleging massive corruption, is the face of the architects who swindled Kenyans billions of money during retired President Daniel arap Moi’s regime.
“We as leaders know that the face of the mandarins is the Nandi Member of Parliament, they should not be allowed to torment jubilee government like they did in Moi and Kibaki time courtesy of Aglo leasing and Goldenberg scandals. They must be halted in their tracks,” Duale stated, speaking at a funeral service in Kieni.
Keter has denied, including when he appeared before the Public Investment Committee (PIC) last week, that there are forces behind his outbursts.
MPs however, insist that he is being used to frustrate the project by powerful and wealthy businesmen who were interested in the tender.
“We know who these people are, in fact some of them were in the Moi and Kibaki governments but now they are behaving like the proverbial cat which we all know was corrupt and would transform each time he wanted to eat something. The Jubilee government must act,” said Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipuchumba Murkomen, firmly echoing Duale’s remarks.
Construction of the railway line is estimated to cost Sh340 billion and Kenya is planning to build 40 stations along the line, 33 of them once the railway becomes operational–according to Transport Cabinet Secretary Michael Kamau, who has dismissed as hear-say claims by the Nandi Hills MP that the railway tender cost was exaggerated more than three times.
It is expected to take five years with the railway running through Mombasa, Kilifi, Kwale, Taita-Taveta, Makueni, Kajiado, Machakos and Nairobi counties and opening up remote areas.
It has a total length of 485.303 kilometers consisting of 33 yards/terminals. The length of section sub grade will be 427.377 km; 98 large and medium bridges and 969 culverts.
The rail line route generally runs parallel to the Mombasa-Nairobi Road, which is 482km.
President Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto have previously dismissed Keter when he first raised the claims on their face, during a public forum in Eldoret, equally saying the first time lawmaker was being used by disgrunteled businessmen.