Safaricom to be paid Sh440m every year

Wednesday June 18 2014

President Kenyatta, Cabinet Secretary Joseph ole Lenku (right) and Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore during a briefing on the implementation of an Integrated Public Safety and Security System at Harambee House in Nairobi on May 14, 2014. PHOTO | PSCU

President Kenyatta, Cabinet Secretary Joseph ole Lenku (right) and Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore during a briefing on the implementation of an Integrated Public Safety and Security System on May 14, 2014. PHOTO | PSCU NATION MEDIA GROUP

JEREMIAH KIPLANG'AT
By JEREMIAH KIPLANG'AT
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The Treasury will pay Sh440 million yearly to Safaricom for maintenance of security surveillance system for five years once it comes into operation.

That will be besides repaying Sh12.9 billion in capital reimbursement of the cost that the company will use in developing the system for the government.

Safaricom chief executive officer Bob Collymore and other bosses from the firm were Wednesday grilled by the National Assembly’s Committee on Administration and Security, for two hours, on the feasibility of the billion-shilling project and why the company was single sourced for the tender.

“We have been told that the government will pay Sh440 million to Safaricom yearly for the maintenance of the infrastructure,” said the committee’s chairman, Mr Asman Kamama, after the meeting.

The system will be called the National Police Integrated Public Safety Communication and Surveillance.

In total, the government will have paid Sh14.9 billion at the end of five years.

The MPs took the Safaricom chiefs to task to justify their involvement in the lucrative tender that aims at setting up a modern surveillance system to help prevent terrorism and other crimes.

The project has attracted controversy after it was revealed that Kenya’s biggest telephone company had been single-sourced to develop the system.

MPs sought to be involved in scrutiny of the tendering process, saying the House’s role was vital.

Mr Collymore justified the tender, arguing that the firm would use its money to build the system and give the government 12 months to test it before Treasury begins to repay the loan.

“The project is valued at Sh14.9 billion over five years. The money will cater for the purchase of equipment, its installation and networking to link it to the central command base,” said Mr Collymore.