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Contractors warned over delays

Rift Valley Regional Commissioner Mr George Natembeya has issued a stern warning to contractors who deliberately delay or fail to complete national government funded projects in time that they will be arrested and the contracts cancelled.

            Natembeya was leading a high profile team to inspect and verify stalled and incomplete multimillion Kericho interchange road, Kabianga University Library and Kimugu water project in Kericho County today.

            While at the Kericho interchange Natembeya instructed the contractor working on the Kericho interchange to mobilize machinery and deploy personnel to the site and start work by 1st February this year.

            He was dismayed that despite the contract being awarded afresh, nothing was at the site to show that work was going on. He told engineers overseeing the project to ensure that the contractor was on site and working on 1st February.

            The RC who also inspected the Kericho bypass directed that approximately 100 meters undone section that the land owners had refused to surrender about 1.5 metre of land on each side should be graded and constructed in the next 10 days.

            Natembeya appreciated the contractors who have delivered on the projects saying that out of the 46 national government projects in Kericho, 35 projects had been successfully completed.

            The RC registered his displeasure on the progress of work at the Sh. 835 million library project and University graduation square at Kabianga University. He noted that the performance to put up the structures was at 52 percent three years down the line when the project started in June 2017.

            The RC gave the contractor M/S Vaghiyani Enterprises Ltd another five months to deliver on the project and hand over to the University. He instructed the Kericho County Development Implementation and Coordination Committee, the President’s Delivery unit and public works in Kericho to agree on the weekly milestones on how to have the works accelerated and supervised.

            Natembeya regretted that the two projects had been delayed deliberately and that they should be finished to allow the users who are students to have a proper place to conduct their graduation ceremonies and access the Library for usage.

            “You should immediately increase the equipment and personnel at the ground and revise the work programme to include accelerated strategies geared towards finishing up the project within the given timelines,” Natembeya said during a terse meeting held at the site.

            He gave the contractor up to 4th June 2021 to finish and hand over the project, adding that the government would provide security 24 hours to work on the project both day and night in shifts.

            Some of the notable challenges at the site include, no progress at the site since November last year without any apparent reason from the contractor, and reduction of workforce and supervisors. Others are: directors’ absentia in meetings and commitments are not acted upon; there is no site agent at the project to oversee general construction; frequent demobilization of workforce and also supply of inappropriate materials, with falsification of materials tests results and slow removal of rejected materials.

            While at Kimugu water project, the RC said the government has injected over Sh. 1billion, and that once the project is complete the residents of Kericho would get uninterrupted water supply until the year 2040. Over 200,000 users would get connected to the water supply.

He said the water intake is at the Mau forests and the site would be planted with more indigenous tree seedlings to preserve and protect the water source from drying up due to wanton destruction of forests.

            He said once the project is complete it would be supplying over 13 million litres of clean fresh water each day.

by Dominic Cheres

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