The last nail on the viability of a controversial water project in Tharaka Nithi County was on Tuesday nailed by the Eastern Regional Commissioner (RC), Isaiah Nakoru who described the project as an eyesore that is not only a total misuse of government resources but also a threat to the lives of the neighbouring community.
During a site visit of national government projects in Tharaka Nithi, the Regional Commissioner noted that the Kanthanje water pan that was intended to provide irrigation and domestic water to the area residents was constructed without a documented design and no environmental impact assessment report.
Nakoru further noted that the project was undertaken without the involvement of the intended beneficiaries and has blocked the access road to the only health facility in the area besides posing a threat to the girls’ dormitory in a neighbouring mixed secondary school.
He took to task the National Irrigation Board (NIB) office in charge, Eng. Raymond Murungi to explain why Sh.20,900,000 was fully paid for such shoddy work that was not only of no use to the intended beneficiaries but was also a threat to their lives and property.
“It is very unfortunate that you not only failed to adhere to laid down government procedures but you adamantly refused to listen to well- intentioned advice from authorities mandated to oversee the implementation of government projects to protect taxpayer’s money,” posed the RC.
Nakoru said as the Chairman of the Regional Development Implementation Committee (RDICC) his team would not condone any form of corruption by government officers and directed the Tharaka Nithi County Commissioner and the County Police Commander to ensure that Eng. Murungi fully discloses why such a huge sum of government money was paid for such shoddy work and made those culpable to carry their own crosses.
The Regional boss who was accompanied technocrats on project implementation from the regional level took the opportunity to remind government officers that the Presidential Executive Order No 1 of 2019 was aimed at ensuring that wananchi got value for money and it is the high time that they realized that they have to walk the talk and shelve all corrupt practices.
He said the government has invested close to 20 billion in 36 projects in Tharaka Nithi County alone and civil servants could only bring the people closer to the government and appreciate what is being done and this could not be achieved where people operate in total disregard of procedures.
By David Mutwiri