The Meru County Development Implementation Coordination Committee (CDICC) has cited lack of financial and equipment capacity of contractors as the major causes of delays in delivering on contracted works.
The Committee members expressed the sentiments during a routine project verification tour of various roads projects in Tigania Central among them the Mikinduri-Kunati-Katithine road which was moving at a very slow pace 21 months after the contract completion time had elapsed.
The committee learnt that the contractor, Elite I.T.S. Ltd took a long time before mobilizing for the works to commence after having received the site to upgrade the road to bitumen standards on July 25, 2017 at a contract sum of Sh.886,351,490.50.
The works on the road were at 8 per cent after 21 months into the 24 months contract time with the contractor insisting on having the works completed for commissioning for use by beneficiaries by end of October 2019.
The contractor said he had encountered a lot of challenges in identifying suitable materials for use in the subbase and base layers with several proposed samples failing to meet the specifications of the roads works.
The contractor has already been paid Sh.88,635,000 as advance payments by the employer and has no pending certificate for payment.
The committee pointed out the need for project employers and implementing agencies to go a step further and interrogate the financial and machinery strength of contractors before awarding the works.
Members felt continued delays by contractors on delivering completed works within the agreed on contract time was likely to dent the government’s image in the eyes of the public, the intended beneficiaries.
They also felt the need to consider taking stern action against contractors who fail to deliver on contracted works and continue to insist on applying for extension of time while they had nothing to show for the advance payment.
By Makaa Margaret