Archbishop Jackson ole Sapit of the Anglican Church of Kenya wants the government to stop mega projects which cost tax payers billions of shillings saying they are contributing to the runaway corruption that has engulfed the country.
He said the government should instead embark on “smaller realistic projects that will be helpful to Kenyans”.
The archbishop, who spoke during a consecration ceremony of St Paul ACK Church in Kiaguthu, Murang’a County on Sunday, expressed concerns that mega projects have lured government officials to “salivate” for public resources, leaving poor innocent Kenyan with huge debts to settle.
During the event attended by top Water ministry officials including Principal Secretary Joseph Wairagu, the archbishop proposed the building of water pans and boreholes which take little time to complete and which he said help majority of the locals without necessarily displacing them.
“I don’t want to vilify you in your home turf but what is the essence of coming up with mega projects that end up displacing the community while their compensation ends up being squandered and the money meant for the project stolen, leaving Kenyans with huge debts to settle?” he posed to the Ministry of Water officials.
Archbishop Sapit urged the government to take up only projects that the country can manage so as to restore posterity.
The archbishop’s sentiments were echoed by Gatanga MP Nduati Ngugi who said bigger projects are a being used as conduits of corruption, calling upon the government to rethink them and come up with realistic projects.
WATER IN GATANGA
“The government has completed the construction of a water supply [system] in Gatanga worth Sh300 million to benefit 30,000 people. If it was a mega project, we would (now) be talking about corruption,” the MP said.
However, Mr Wairagu dismissed the claims of loss of money in Itare, Kimwarer and Arror dam projects, adding that they have been wrongly judged since some of the dams do not fall under the Water ministry.
He challenged the National Assembly to legislate on the management of dams, which he noted are domiciled in various ministries, for easier monitoring and oversight.
“I want to state that no single cent is lost in Itare dam [project] but to have a proper oversight of the management of dams, the National Assembly should come up with a law that will put them in one docket,” he said.