Plans by the County Government of Uasin Gishu to purchase National Bank’s Eldoret Town Branch building at a cost of Sh.568m have been put on hold.
This is after the Uasin Gishu County Assembly passed a motion stopping the planned purchase and instead directed the executive arm of the county government to construct modern offices in existing county land at a cheaper cost of Sh. 300m.
Members of the County Assembly passed the motion moved by the leader of majority, Josphat Lowoi expressing fears that plans to buy the national bank building could lead to loss of public funds due to legal issues pertaining to the ownership of the land on which the bank’s building is situated.
The County Deputy Speaker, Hosea Korir said the ownership challenges could put public money at risk yet the county government can still put up modern offices on its own land with the money already budgeted for.
On Wednesday Lands CEC, Eng. Nelson Maritim was put to task when he appeared before the committee of the whole house due to discrepancies in figures he presented on the planned purchase.
Members of the county assembly said they were not sure about the figures as presented by the CEC in his report to the committee yet the Assembly has to rely on accurate figures to approve the project.
The assembly has now asked Controller of Budget not to release any payment for the same building.
Speaker David Kiplagat said the assembly has an oversight role in expenditure of public money, claiming that his office will move with speed to ensure that resolution about purchase of the house was adhered to.
The National Bank Building is adjacent to Uasin Gishu County headquarters in Eldoret town.
By Kiptanui Cherono