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Auditor raises alarm over safety of city building

Auditor raises alarm over safety of city building

The
State Department for Trade and Enterprise
Development’s
building project has been considered unsafe by Auditor
General Nancy Gathungu.

Gathungu
claimed that the Kenya
Institute of Business Training (KIBT)
premises at Parklands Complex in
Nairobi had a basement that was overflowing with water from underground in her
report for the year that ended on June 30, 2021.

“…the
second basement floor of the project was overflowing with water from
underground. The Management explained that the water was pumped out regularly
to avoid overflows,” Gathungu said in her report.

In
light of the current water leak and moisture on the basement floor, she claimed
that the management failed to clarify the precautions taken to maintain the
building’s safety.

According
to the report, KIBT and a contractor entered into a contract for the
partitioning of offices at Parklands Complex for a price of Sh146.6 million.
The project was to be completed in six months.

The project began on September 17, 2018, the project was
scheduled to end on March 17, 2019.

According
to a review of the project file, the contractor requested and was granted many
extensions of time, the first of which was from March 17, 2019, to May 17,
2019, followed by June 30, 2019, and then September 24, 2019, according to
Gathungu.

She
continued by saying that a project audit inspection conducted in the month of
October 2021 discovered that the contractor was absent from the site and that
the partitioning work had not been finished.

“No
convincing justification was offered for failing to complete the job within the
time frame specified in the contract. In this situation, the delays may cause
cost overruns and postpone the State Department’s use of the building for the
purpose of rendering public services.

According
to a recent audit report on building collapses in Kenya by the National Construction Authority (NCA), poor
workmanship has been identified as the primary contributing factor.

The
conclusions were reached by NCA after an evaluation of 14,895 buildings.

According
to the assessment, 10,791 of the structures were extremely hazardous and
required to be either demolished or strengthened before being occupied.

According
to the research, a sizable portion of Kenyans are surviving on structural time
bombs.

Only
2,194 structures were certified as safe, while another 1,217 were found to be
fair.

The
NCA also discovered that thousands of unapproved structures are present in
Nairobi.

 President
Uhuru Kenyatta ordered an audit of all Nairobi buildings in January 2015 in an
effort to stop the terrible incidents, and it was discovered that only 42% of
the buildings in the city were deemed appropriate for occupancy.

The
State Department for Trade was further criticized in the report for not having
ownership paperwork for land lots in South C, Nairobi.

“According
to information that is currently available and declared under Annex 3 to the
financial accounts, the State Department is the owner of the Weights and
Measures Complex in South C Nairobi, which is situated on an undetermined-value
plot of property measuring roughly seven acres. The ownership paperwork,
however, were not made available for audit examination, according to her.

The
ownership status of the piece of land in South C Nairobi as of June 30, 2021, could
not be verified under the circumstances.

Read full story here..

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