Munga, wa Iria wa­ter wars shift to build­ing of Sh300m col­lege

Ty­coon stays put at com­pany board and ar­gues plans to ben­e­fit Mu­rang’a res­i­dents

Business Daily (Kenya) - - ECONOMY & POLITICS - Ndungu Gachane Busi­ness­man Peter Munga (left) with Mu­rang’a Gov­er­nor Mwangi wa Iria early this year.

Ty­coon Peter Munga has vowed not to va­cate his seat as Mu­rang’a Wa­ter and San­i­ta­tion Com­pany (Muwasco) chair­man and con­tinue the con­struc­tion of a wa­ter in­sti­tute de­spite op­po­si­tion from gov­er­nor Mwangi wa Iria.

The busi­ness­man said the de­ci­sion to build the in­sti­tute was ar­rived at af­ter county lead­ers met at a Nairobi ho­tel to de- lib­er­ate on how Mu­rang’a res­i­dents would ben­e­fit from the con­struc­tion of the North­ern Wa­ter Col­lec­tor Tun­nel. stu­dents from out­side Mu­rang’a will pay more for cour­ses at pro­posed wa­ter in­sti­tute

This es­ca­lates the row be­tween the bil­lion­aire busi­ness­man and Mr Wa Iria over con­trol of Muwasco in a dis­pute that is cur­rently be­fore the court.

“Plans to con­struct the wa­ter in­sti­tute are com­plete and the prin­ci­pal sec­re­tary for wa­ter Joseph Irungu says money is avail­able. We are wait­ing for the agree­ment be­tween Ndikwe Pri­mary School and Muwasco to cede land where the in­sti­tute will be built,” Mr Munga said at Ki­awambeu treat­ment plant on Satur­day dur­ing a con­fer­ence that brought to­gether four wa­ter com­pa­nies in the county.

He said the con­struc­tion of the in­sti­tute would take one-and-half years, adding that more than 20 cour­ses will be of­fered.

“The school will bring de­vel­op­ment in the county.

“Stu­dents from out­side Mu­rang’a will be charged 50 per cent more since it will be a profit-mak­ing busi­ness,” he said.

His state­ment comes a week af­ter Mr Wa Iria vowed to stop the con­struc­tion of the in­sti­tute, say­ing the move was a mis­placed pri­or­ity aimed at seek­ing av­enues to em­bez­zle pub­lic funds.

“I will not let the com­pany bor­row Sh300 mil­lion to con­struct a wa­ter in­sti­tute.

“That money should be given to elected lead­ers for wa­ter sup­ply in all the 35 wards. The Pres­i­dent has con­structed eight tech­ni­cal in­sti­tutes in Mu­rang’a where wa­ter-re­lated cour­ses can be taught,” the gov­er­nor said.

Mr Munga has sued the gov­er­nor af­ter he tried to re­place him as Muwasco chair­man.

The two have had a long-run­ning feud over man­age­ment of Muwasco

The gov­er­nor ac­cused the ty­coon of bankrolling his op­po­nent Moses Mwangi’s cam­paigns and in­ter­fer­ing with lo­cal pol­i­tics.

Dr Mwangi was chief ex­ec­u­tive of Equa­to­rial Nut Pro­ces­sors — which is owned by Mr Munga

Mr Munga also has shares worth bil­lions of shillings in Bri­tam Hold­ings Ltd, a stake in Eq­uity Bank and owns Meru Gin­ner­ies, Pioneer Group of Schools as well as Equa­to­rial Nut Pro­ces­sors Lim­ited.

Wa Iria says the move was a mis­placed pri­or­ity aimed at seek­ing av­enues to em­bez­zle pub­lic funds

ROW

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