, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 15 – Nandi Hills MP Alfred Keter has said he will not honour summons by Parliament’s Transport, Public Works and Housing Committee charging that it is biased.
Keter who on Wednesday appeared before the Public Investments Committee which is probing the now controversial standard gauge railway tender said the chairman of the Transport Committee, Maina Kamanda, has been quoted in the media claiming that Keter was paid by dissatisfied contractors to oppose the tender which was awarded to China Road and Bridge Corporation.
“The chair has been on record saying Keter has been used by some contractors. So, he will arrive at a biased conclusion,” the Nandi Hills legislator declared.
“I want to tell Kenyans that it will be better for us to give the Public Investments Committee (PIC) time to deliberate on this issue, and it is only their findings that Kenyans will trust,” stated the MP.
The National Assembly’s Standing Orders allow a sitting Member of Parliament to decide whether he will appear before a committee or not.
For instance, during the Tenth Parliament MPs Aden Duale and Kiema Kilonzo refused to appear before the House Committee on Defence and Foreign Relations which was at the time investigating the authenticity of a leaked dossier which linked the UK Embassy to the ICC trials of President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto.
This is despite the fact that the two were the ones who introduced the dossier into the House.
On Tuesday, Keter requested to appear before the PIC so that he could produce documented evidence to support his claims that the tender was irregularly awarded and that Kenyan taxpayers will end up paying for the loss incurred.
PIC Chairman Adan Keynan said the committee is determined to establish the truth on the tender deal.
“Let us not get engaged in speculation… let us be guided by the rule of law and the directive of the Speaker. I want to assure the Kenyan public that we will say the truth and nothing but the truth,” he said as he urged his committee members to pore through the documents presented by Keter to enable them draw strong conclusions.
Transport Secretary Michael Kamau, his National Treasury counterpart Henry Rotich as well as Managing Directors of the Public Procurement Oversight Authority, the Kenya Railways Corporation and officials from the China Roads and Bridge Company are expected to appear before the PIC on Monday.
The controversy surrounds claims that the budget for the railway construction shot up from the initial Sh220bn to Sh1.3 trillion.