House team wants cost of NHIF car park probed

The NHIF Carpark building in Nairobi. file photo | nmg
The NHIF Carpark building in Nairobi. file photo | nmg 

Parliament has asked the anti-corruption agency to investigate how the contract to build a multi-storey car park owned by the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) was varied by Sh3 billion a decade ago.

The National Assembly Public Investments Committee says construction took long and the cost varied greatly from original projections.

It wants the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to fast-track investigations with a view to charging anyone found culpable of defrauding the fund.

“There was a very high variation of 337 per cent over and above the original cost, which is in contravention of the law, which provides that the preferred margin of preference shall be 15 per cent of the evaluated price tender,” the report states.

Documents provided to the committee show that the NHIF entered into an agreement with NK Brothers Ltd to build the car park at Sh909.7 million over 65 weeks.

The project started in May 2002 and set for completion in August 2003. The car park was completed in 2008 at a cost of Sh3.34 billion, but a further amount of Sh626 million and Sh4.7 million was incurred in the 2009/10 and 2010/11 financial years respectively,  putting the total cost at Sh3.9 billion.

NHIF chief executive Geoffrey Mwangi said the revision of completion due to government freeze in projects and modification of the car park including vehicular lifts additional basement floor led to the cost hike.

Mr Mwangi took the helm of the fund in February 2016 in an acting capacity and was confirmed to the job this year.