Six Nairobi City county employees and a director of Broadways Hardware and General Supplies Limited, have been charged before an anti-corruption court with conspiracy to commit an economic crime, failure to comply with procurement laws among others.
The employees are Peter Gitau Wanjera, Edna Nyaitondi Mayieka, Ephantus Gitonga Njoka, Allan Muchira Nyaga, Benard Kigori and Charles Gatheru Mburu the Director, Broadways Hardware and General supplies Limited that was also charged.
They include procurement officers, Senior clerical officers and engineers.
The accused persons were being accused of conspiring with Broadways Hardware and general supplies which was the winning bidder for a tender for the supply,delivery and installation of an asphalt at Nairobi City County to defraud the county.
They were accused of substituting the tender form which had a price of Sh 50 million with one containing a higher bid price of Sh 150 million and inserting an additional bid security in the tender to their favor.
In the first count, the 8 accused persons were charged with jointly conspiring to commit an economic crime by fraudulently inserting a bid security after the completion of the opening of tender exercise in tender No.NCC/RPW&T/T/196/2016-2017 for the supply ,delivery and installation of asphalt plant at Nairobi City County Nanyuki Road depot.
They are accused of committing the offense on diverse dates between 21st and 30th November 2016 in Nairobi within Nairobi city county.
In the second count, the accused persons were charged with conspiracy to commit an economic crime by fraudulently substituting the above tender form.
Thirdly, Wanjera, Nyaitondi( supply chain dept. at Nairobi County Government), Mburu and his company were charged with committing a fraudulent act by substituting the tender.
The three above further faced another charge of committing a fraudulent act by jointly inserting a bid security after the completion of the opening of tender exercise .
Lastly, Gitonga, Kigori, Nyaga and Nyaitondi were charged with willful failure to comply with the law relating to procurement.
The court heard that the above persons having been appointed to an ad hoc Evaluation Committee to evaluate the above tender and being persons whose function concerned management of public revenue ,jointly and willfully failed to comply with the law relating to procurement wit section 80( 2) of the public procurement and asset disposal act No.33 of 2015 as read with regulation 16(5) and (7) of the Act 2006 by failing to ensure that the mandatory tender requirements were fully meet by Broadways Hardware and General Supplies Limited.
With the exception of the third accused person, Mwangi, who did not appear in court for plea taking, the rest denied the charges before Anti-corruption court Chief Magistrate Lawrence Mugambi.The court heard that the third accused person could not attend court for the reason that he was unwell after undergoing a surgery recently.
The prosecution did not oppose the release of the accused persons on bail but asked the court to consider that the charges against the accused persons are serious, status of the accused persons has changed from suspects to accused persons and therefore requested that the bail terms commensurate the offenses and ensure they attend court.
After considering the submissions Magistrate Mugambi, deferred the plea for the third accused person to two weeks.
“I am mindful that the accused person have so far cooperate with the investigators and the offenses are serious, but it has not been established that they are likely to interfere with investigations nor at flight risk,”ruled the Magistrate.
The accused persons were granted a bond of sh 1 Million or a cash bail of sh 400,000.The case will be mentioned on 8th August for pre-trial and fixing of the hearing date.
The Magistrate further directed the prosecution to supply all the documents and any other material to be relied on in the matter on 3rd August.