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Macharia invites project managers for talks on defects laws

 James Macharia
Transport and Urban Development Secretary James Macharia. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Built environment experts have been invited for talks on the controversial defects liability regulations gazetted last week that apportion blame for poorly built properties to project managers.

Transport and Urban Development Secretary James Macharia vouched for a consultative process to review the controversial law.

“I remain committed to providing legislation that reflects government policy in the construction industry, inclusive of stakeholder interest in line with the Constitution of Kenya and applicable laws and regulations,” he said.

Institute of Construction Project Managers in Kenya (ICPMK) chairman Tom Oketch said they would advocate the inclusion of new rules giving them overall responsibility in the implementation of projects, improving grip on all activities in a given public or private project.

“We want recognition that empowers us to take charge of a project site from the beginning to completion of a project.

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“We will question each process and material used thereby ensuring all projects are built according to set standards,” he said after the minister’s call.

Earlier, ICPMK and other construction sector professionals said the gazetted National Construction Authority (defects liability) Regulations 2020 undermined the role of architects as supervisors during projects and was bad for business.

“Contractors execute performance bonds that are withheld during defects liability period but roping in architects who are agents of a developer creates confusion in future contracts, whether public or private,” he had said.

ICMPK’s letter to Mr Macharia called for degazettement of the regulations to facilitate fresh talks, saying it had created confusion in the construction sector.

Mr Oketch said delays in issuing a certificate of completion would derail the release of payments to contractors, making them shy away from new projects.

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