A parliamentary committee chairman has threatened to name influential businessmen who funded the Jubilee campaigns and are now demanding financial favours in return.
On Monday, President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto at a rally in Eldoret intimated that discontent among Rift Valley MPs is being fuelled by a businessman who failed to win the Sh320 billion tender to upgrade the Uganda railway to standard gauge.
Yesterday the chairman of the parliamentary Transport, Public Works and Housing committee, Maina Kamanda, told the Star that his committee has received numerous complaints from Cabinet Secretaries and parastatal bosses about “wheeler-dealers” who are demanding “payback” for supporting Jubilee during the election campaigns.
“The most affected are tenders that touch the Ministry of Transport and Department of Defence. We know them very well and we will release their names to the public if they will not stop. We even know how much they are paying some MPs to push for these tenders,” said Kamanda.
“They are going round claiming that they funded the campaigns and they want their money back through such deals,” added the MP.
“Brokers have pocketed politicians to push for them to get contracts,” Uhuru told the rally on Monday at Eldoret Sports Club.
At the rally Nandi Hills MP Alfred Keter claimed that the railway project is riddled with corruption. The latest issue of Nairobi Law Monthly claims that a massive bribe of Sh32.5 billion was paid to three government officials and a Mombasa businessman.
Independent investigations by the Star have established that the government has zeroed in on two wealthy businessmen allegedly encouraging MPs to destabilise the Jubilee government.
One is the son of a former cabinet minister who was influential during the Kibaki government.
The second businessman is based in Mombasa with strong ties to the Rift Valley.
The two have reportedly engaged two top lawyers to go to court to challenge the award of the railway contract to China Bridges and Roads Construction.
“As we speak, there is no head of a parastatal they are not summoning. They are even summoning cabinet secretaries and those who are not strong are caving in,” Kamanda told the Star.
Kamanda’s committee cleared the standard gauge railway contract. He denied that officials were bribed to award the project to CBRC, now known as China Railway Construction Company.
“Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga recently said this is his baby as he chaired several cabinet sub-committees on this project. The deal was sealed in 2012 when Amos Kimunya was the Minister for Transport. What this government is doing is to just implement so where do bribes come in?” said Kamanda.
He said he led a delegation of MPs to China to ascertain the capacity of CRCC.
“China’s Transport minister confirmed to us that this company has the capacity. He said they trust it,” Kamanda said.
Yesterday, a defiant Alfred Keter rejected claims by President Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto that he was being used by a businessman to undermine the Jubilee government.
“They will not stop me from telling the truth. Let them address the issues I have raised on the welfare of the Kalenjin community and corruption in the railway tender,” said Keter.
The MP spoke to The Star on phone while on his way to attend a second rally for Uhuru in Rift Valley.
He accused Uhuru of travelling to Eldoret without saying what projects he had initiated in the region.
“How can a whole government turn me into the subject of that rally? We have stalled roads including for Ziwa, Baraton and Mosoriot yet the leaders never mentioned that,” said Keter.
Keter said he had a dossier on corruption in the railway tender and would release the details if the leaders do not deal with the matter.
He again insisted that those who allegedly betrayed Ruto at The Hague should be fired from government.