Parliament summons former Interior CS Fred Matiang’i over the the closure of Kenyatta University’s campus in Kigali, Rwanda.
Former Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i has been summoned by members of Parliament to respond to questions regarding the closure of Kenyatta University’s campus in Kigali, Rwanda.
The former CS has been summoned to appear before the National Assembly’s public investment committee on Education and Governance next Wednesday.
He is set to clarify why he ordered the closure of the campus in 2018 without consulting other stakeholders.
Matiang’i who was then the Education Cabinet Secretary is alleged to have issued a directive to have the campus closed without consulting other key stakeholders.
In a statement, Moses Kirima Nguchine, the Committee chair, said that accountability for such decisions is important to prevent future mismanagement.
Additionally, the Committee requires Professor Olive Mugenda, former KU Vice Chancellor and accounting officer during the establishment of the campus to provide an explanation for the expenses incurred during the purchase and renovation of the campus which amount to Ksh314 million and Ksh54 million respectively.
“The Public Investments Committee stresses the importance of transparency, accountability, and due diligence in all financial matters related to public institutions,” read the statement in part.
“The findings and recommendations of this report are crucial for ensuring proper governance, preventing financial mismanagement, and upholding public trust.”
The summon follows an inspection tour to the country by a delegation of some Committee members led by Central Imenti MP Moses Kirima on September 27.
The Committee conducted an inspection visit at the KU campus in Rwanda last month following an audit query raised by Auditor General Nancy Gathungu for the Financial Year 2019/2020.
The query showed that the campus closed despite Ksh420 million having been spent on the project.
According to the Auditor General, the closure and the amount used was not justified hence indicating a mismanagement of funds.
“The university had initially intended to purchase a ready-to-use property. Consequently, the expenditure of Ksh54,073,302.81 for renovations and partitioning was not justified. This indicated a mismanagement of funds and a lack of adherence to the original purchase plan,” the report read in part.
The committee also pointed out that the purchase of the land in Kigali was done through single sourcing, without comparing prices among different properties.
According to the MPs, the lack of competitive bidding raised concerns about potential inflation of the property cost amounting to Ksh314 million.
“The inspection revealed poor workmanship in the renovations, evidenced by issues such as tiles wearing out prematurely. This substandard quality indicated a lack of oversight and value for the amount spent on renovations,” the committee said.
“It may be difficult to recoup the investment in this property if the University decides to sell due to its overpriced purchase.”
The committee recommended that a special audit should be conducted to ascertain whether there was value for money in the purchase of the land and building and the subsequent expenditures.
The audit should also investigate financial mismanagement during the financial year.