World Bank blacklists Kenyan consultancy firm over fraud


An atrium is seen at the World Bank headquarters building in Washington, US. PHOTO | REUTERS

The World Bank has blacklisted a Kenyan consultancy firm that has undertaken several multimillion shilling projects for top government agencies over fraud.

The multilateral lender said an investigation conducted by its corruption-fighting unit had established that the Nairobi-based Africa Development Professional Group (ADP), which says it provides “consultancy and advisory services on management, investments, business solutions, corporate finance and business development” had engaged in fraudulent practices during a bank-funded project in Somalia.

ADP and its affiliates have been debarred for 21 months and will be ineligible to participate in any World Bank-financed projects during the period.

“The (Somalia) project was designed to strengthen the staffing and institutional capacity of selected line ministries and central agencies to perform core government functions,” said the World Bank in a statement.

The debarment also 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 African Development Bank (AfDB). 

The financial institutions, which are mostly owned and financed by governments, have been keen to curb corruption in their projects which run into billions of dollars annually.  

“The debarment makes ADP ineligible to participate in projects and operations financed by institutions of the World Bank Group,” said the bank.

“It is part of a settlement agreement under which the company acknowledges responsibility for the underlying sanctionable practices and agrees to meet specified corporate compliance conditions as a condition for release from debarment.”

ADP says on its website its past clients include Kenya’s Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, the Gambian Office of the President, the Government of Ghana, the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (Kenya) and the Department for International Development (DfID), Rwanda.

The above projects are however not related to the debarment.