Parliament probes unlawful disbursement of Sh6 billion days to 2022 election

Telkom subscribers queueing at Telkom house, Nairobi, on April 11, 2022. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

The Joint Sitting of the Departmental Committee on Finance and National Planning, and Committee on Communication, Information & Innovation, has opened an inquest into the state acquisition of Telkom Kenya.

Chaired by Molo MP Kimani Kuria, the lawmakers have poked holes into the acquisition of the telco by the Government of Kenya just a few days to the General Election.

While appearing before the committee on Tuesday morning, the Controller of Budget says she approved the payment and asked the National Treasury to seek Parliament approval. However, this was not done.

The committee is expected to get submissions from the offices of the Solicitor General and the Chief Executive of Telkom Kenya in the afternoon.

The Treasury acquired a 60 percent stake in Telkom Kenya from UK-based Helios Investment Partners, for Sh6.09 billion.

This means that the company is now fully State-owned.

Documents tabled in Parliament show the purchase was one of the strings of expenditures that the Treasury incurred without the approval of Parliament in the weeks to the inauguration of President William Ruto on September 13.

France's Orange bought a majority share in Telkom Kenya when it was privatised in 2007 but then sold its stake to London-based Helios Investment in 2015.