AfDB to sustain scrutiny on Kenya project tenders


African Development Bank headquarters. PHOTO | COURTESY

The African Development Bank (AfBD) has warned of sustained sanctions against firms and individuals for fraud and corruption in multibillion-shillings projects financed by the development agency in Kenya.

The bank’s Vice-President for Power, Energy, Climate, and Green Growth, Kevin Kariuki said scrutiny of procurement and expenditure programmes would be continued to curb abuse.

“We would not relent in ensuring our funds are applied fairly and ethically,” he said on the sidelines of the lender's annual general meeting in Accra.

“Every action must be accounted for to guarantee the legitimacy of our financing and partnership programmes,” he added.

An increasing number of individuals and firms were recently banned for procurement malpractices involving projects funded by the AfDB in Kenya.

ALSO READ: World Bank, AfDB crackdown shines spotlight on SMEs

The bank has recently banned a Chinese company, Weihai Construction Group, for fraud in three multi-billion-shilling infrastructure projects in Kenya.

The bank said an investigation conducted by its Office of Integrity and Anti-Corruption established that Weihai engaged in fraudulent practices in the Sh33 billion Kenol-Sagana-Marua highway improvement project, phase two of the Nairobi Rivers Basin Rehabilitation and restoration Programme: sewerage improvement project, Phase II, and the towns sustainable water supply and sanitation programme.

During the 35 months debarment period, Weihai and its affiliates will be ineligible to participate in AfDB -financed projects.

ALSO READ: AfDB quits power plant over Gideon Moi stake

Additionally, the debarment qualifies for cross-debarment by other multilateral development banks under the Agreement for Mutual Enforcement of Debarment Decisions, including the Asian Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the World Bank Group.

The ban on Weihai in December added to the list of firms that have been punished for irregularities in Kenyan projects.

[email protected]