By Kenfrey Kiberenge
Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka will move in to the grand official residence in July â but if Treasury allocates the Sh150 million required to complete the project in the upcoming supplementary budget.
Public Works Permanent Secretary John Lonyangapuo said Italbuild Imports, the new contractor who took over the project in August 2009 after Dimken Kenya Ltd was shown the door for failing to beat several deadlines and poor workmanship, was putting the final touches on the house.
The PS said only the main building that will serve mainly as the residence is incomplete, requiring windows and finishing.
"If the VP did not have a house, we could tell him to move in as we complete the remaining work," said Lonyangapuo.
He, however, pointed out that the Government owed the contractor some money for work already done, and this had delayed the completion of the project.
"If we had the remaining money today, we could complete it by April, but without money we can only target July," explained the PS.
The construction of the VPâs house has been marred with controversy right from the day the idea was mooted.
When, for instance, the then Finance Minister David Mwiraria indicated in the 2005/2006 budget estimates that Sh1 billion would be set aside for the construction of the VPâs residence, there was public outcry, with civil society terming the proposed project a misallocation of public money.
However, the then Roads minister, Prime Minister Raila Odinga clarified that the amount had been set aside to revive all the stalled Government projects, effectively quelling the rage.
He explained that only Sh197 million was earmarked for the VPâs residence in Karen.
The contractor who was initially given the project in July 2005, Dimken Construction Company, failed to beat the January 2007 deadline prompting the ministry to extend the project period by one year.