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Kenya Power’s Last Mile project set for AfDB impact audit

Kenya Power
A Kenya Power technician at work. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The African Development Bank (AfDB) plans to conduct an audit of the first phase of the Last Mile Connectivity Project that links Kenyan homes to the national grid under a subsidised programme, days after blacklisting a Chinese firm involved in the project.

The bank that financed part of the Kenya Power #ticker:KPLC project has invited firms to tender for the provision of audit services for the project, a process which will subsequently inform support for future Kenya Power projects.

“The independent development evaluation function (IDEV) of the African Development Bank Group invites individual consultants to indicate their interest for the impact evaluation of the Last Mile Connectivity Project in Kenya,” said the bank in a tender notice.

“The evaluation will focus on the bank-funded Last Mile Connectivity Project approved in 2014 and scheduled to close in 2020.”

The AfDB audit comes at a time the lender recently blacklisted a Chinese company Sinotec contracted by Kenya Power for the second phase of Last Mile Project.

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The AfDB, said Sinotec, a power transmission and distribution equipment firm, misrepresented its experience to meet qualification requirements for several AfDB-funded projects

In 2018 Kenya Power contracted Sinotec to design, supply and install 3,000km low-voltage single-phase lines and supply cables in Kisumu, western Kenya and Mount Kenya regions.

The AfDB said its latest audit aims to provide credible evidence-based information on the impacts of the AfDB funded Last Mile Connectivity project.

“The overall objective of the evaluation is to inform the mid-term review of the bank group’s strategy for the New Deal on Energy for Africa (2016-2025) by identifying lessons and potential areas for improvement,” it said.

“The specific evaluation objectives are to assess to what extent reliable and new access to electricity have been achieved by the project (and) assess to what extent productive use of energy, especially small businesses have been accomplished by the project.”

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