State may pay former Mathira MP Ephraim Maina Sh322 million


The Government could pay a construction company associated with former Mathira MP Ephraim Maina Sh322 million because the Attorney General did not defend a civil claim.

Kirinyaga Construction Company had filed a case in 2009 against the AG for breach of contract arising from construction of a road but no defence was entered by the State.

The AG agreed to pay the money after failing to enter defence but the Ministry of Finance has refused to honour the court order reached by consent of the two parties.

“Payment of the debt by the Government becomes payable by the line ministry only upon authorisation by the Principal Secretary of Finance, who has neglected to effect the payment despite knowledge of the court order,” says Mr Peter Musango of Kirinyaga Construction.

The refusal by the AG prompted the company to file another case asking the court to compel the Ministries of Finance and Public Works to pay the cash.

On April 23, High Court Judge Weldon Korir allowed the company to apply for orders compelling the Finance Principal Secretary to pay the money.

The judge also allowed the company to seek orders against the Principal Secretaries in charge of Ministries of Finance and Roads to be committed to civil jail for contempt of court orders in the event that they fail to pay the money, plus interest.

The case came up in court yesterday but Justice Korir was absent. Another judge directed that the case be mentioned before Justice Korir on May 30. The company had entered into a contract with the ministry for rehabilitation of the Murang’a-Sagana-Karatina-Marua roads after winning the tender in 2002.

A disagreement arose between the company and the Ministry of Roads over payment prompting it to file a suit for breach of contract, seeking damages. The AG did not file his defence on time but in October 2010 the State Law Office indicated to the lawyers of Kirinyaga Construction that they were agreeable to a consent.

A consent was done and sent to the AG’s office so that it could be signed and returned for filing and endorsement in court.

Instead, the consent was recorded before High Court Judge Muga Apondi on December 20, 2010 committing the Government to pay the money to the firm.