COR­RI­DORS OF POWER

The Star (Kenya) - - News -

SOME things are just too dif­fi­cult to com­pre­hend. Take, for ex­am­ple, an unau­tho­rised of­fi­cer in gov­ern­ment is­su­ing ex­port per­mits with a value of Sh1.9 bil­lion. This is what hap­pened in the Min­istry of Min­ing, pre­vi­ously un­der the watch of Tourism CS Najib Balala (pic­tured) but now CS Dan Kazungu. Cor­ri­dors has es­tab­lished that the ex­port per­mits were is­sued in the pre­vi­ous fi­nan­cial year by the of­fi­cer, whose em­ploy­ment con­tract ex­pired on April 19, 2014. This is con­trary to the Min­ing Act, which stip­u­lates that ex­port per­mits are to be signed off by the Com­mis­sioner of Mines or an au­tho­rised of­fi­cer whose author­ity has been del­e­gated in writ­ing.

WE are told that an in­sa­tiable ap­petite for money is not like the starv­ing per­son whose sole pre­oc­cu­pa­tion is de­vour­ing food and quaffing wa­ter, and do­ing so with a vengeance. How­ever, the love for money of one of the most prom­i­nent in­di­vid­u­als in the coun­try’s top po­lit­i­cal fam­ily may have taken this ap­petite to other lev­els. Al­though it may not be easy to com­pre­hend, Cor­ri­dors has it that the oc­to­ge­nar­ian, who re­cently re­tired from pub­lic ser­vice, is said to have ac­quired over 3,000 acres of prime land in one of the coun­ties that neigh­bour Nairobi, not for the pur­pose of turn­ing it into im­me­di­ate use, but for spec­u­la­tive pur­poses. Those close to the man can­not un­der­stand why he still has the ap­petite to con­tinue ac­cu­mu­lat­ing de­spite his ad­vanced age. How­ever, he may be for­given be­cause it’s only in Africa where prim­i­tive ac­cu­mu­la­tion of wealth by the elites is still on the prowl, on all fours and with fangs bared.

IS this an­other tragedy wait­ing to hap­pen in the city? A city build­ing that is un­der con­struc­tion at the junc­tion of Keny­atta Av­enue and Ki­mathi Street in the space pre­vi­ously oc­cu­pied by Naku­matt Down­town has pil­lars so weak that they ap­pear to be bend­ing. As this goes on, the de­part­ment of Com­pli­ance and En­force­ment at City Hall seems to be in deep slum­ber. Even more sur­pris­ing is the fact that ten­ants have al­ready oc­cu­pied the base­ment and ground spa­ces even as the con­struc­tion works go on. The city by-laws are clear: No ten­ant should oc­cupy a build­ing that has not been com­pleted.

SUP­PLI­ERS in Bun­goma county are a wor­ried and frus­trated lot. The county gov­ern­ment is re­ported not to have paid them for two years. The men and women are now threat­en­ing that they will soon un­leash all the scan­dals, big and small, that have ever taken place in Bun­goma county.

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