A senior Kenyan cabinet minister has ordered the immediate arrest and prosecution of a contractor who failed to finish a 4.5km road four years on from the contract award.
It marks the start of a new, zero-tolerance stance toward projects that drag on or are done badly, said Interior Ministry Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i (pictured).
"We are not going to play these kinds of games anymore," the minister said, adding builders and public officials can no longer evade responsibility through bribes, reports the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation.Â
He said contractors who fail to deliver will be arrested and prosecuted.
The government has reassigned 30% of all road projects in the Western region, Matiang’i said.
Non-payment of project invoices should no longer be an excuse because the National Treasury has been releasing funds, he added.
It had released more than $280m in the last two weeks to pay project bills, mostly in road construction, he said.
On a tour of Nyandarua County on 15 June he ordered the immediate arrest and prosecution of a contractor who had not finished a road commissioned four years ago.
"I ordered his arrest. We shall take him to court for wasting public resources. We are not going to play these kinds of games anymore. Long gone are the days when contractors believe they can escape responsibility by through bribes."
Public officials implicated in wrongdoing will also be prosecuted, Matiang’i said.
For the next two days, Matiang’i will inspect all government-commissioned projects in the Western Region counties of Vihiga, Kakamega, Busia, Bungoma and Transzoia.
Image: Interior Ministry Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i (ICT Authority Kenya/CC BY 2.0)