The management of the Kenyatta International Convention Center was again this week in the spotlight over its failure to collect arrears owed to it by different entities totalling Sh742.2 million.
KICC management, while appearing before the National Assembly’s Public Investments Committee on Commercial Affairs and Energy, was put to task to explain the debts said to have been accrued over time.
KICC has also been in the spotlight for failing to collect rent owed to it by a private secretary attached to the late President Mwai Kibaki estimated to be about Sh36 million.
The allegations and the new figures are part of an audit report by Auditor-General Nancy Gathungu and are contained in audit reports for the financial years 2019/20 and 2020/21.
While appearing before the committee for the third time, KICC management led by chief executive officer Patricia Ondeng were questioned over the failure to recover the funds, despite growing concerns that the centre has been running out of funds to service some of its operations.
In the report, Ms Gathungu argued that the institution’s management had consistently failed to institute measures to recover the long outstanding debts owed to KICC including Sh742.2 million which has been outstanding for over one year.
The OAG also noted that KICC’s 18th floor had been occupied by the private secretary to the late Kibaki from July 1, 2013 to July 1, 2016 accruing a total debt of Sh36 million though no lease agreement was provided for audit review.
KICC Acting CEO Patricia Ondeng’.
The committee also probed an existing dispute regarding ownership of the land on which the corporation stands.
The OAG noted that the land on which the Garden Square restaurant stands is under dispute between the Corporation and the county government of Nairobi.
However, a letter from the Chief-of-Staff and Head of Public Service to the Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development clarified that the land in dispute has since been gazetted as a national monument and a part of the Corporation. In addition, the Cabinet Secretary was directed to urgently issue ownership documents to the Corporation.
Committee chairman David Pkosing raised concerns about KICC’s failure to avail details of the contractual agreement regarding provision of security by the National Youth Service (NYS).
“We have noted you have been paying Sh3,100,000 monthly for the provision of security services NYS, why have the relevant documentation not been provided?” asked Pkosing who is also the Pokot South MP.
The KICC team promised to avail the necessary paperwork during a subsequent meeting with the committee.