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PAC to summon Uhuru over cars

By | November 2nd 2009 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

by Beauttah Omanga and Stelle Mwangi

The parliamentary watchdog Public Accounts Committee meets today to set a date with Finance minister Uhuru Kenyatta.

The PAC chairman and Ikolomani MP Bonny Khalwale said his committee wants to know how the deal with CMC was reached for the purchase of 120 Volkswagen Passat Sedans.

Elsewhere, the Mars Group lobby called for vigilance, warning that more money could be at risk in the transaction.

"We want to know how the minister committed public funds without seeking the authority of Parliament as required by law," Khalwale told The Standard.

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Ps meeting

Media reports indicate the Head of Civil Service Francis Muthaura has summoned PSs to a meeting today where it is believed the issue of the vehicles will feature.

But in its statement, Mars Group warned Kenyans could lose huge amounts of money.

"This scheme is a fraud," said Mars Group boss Mwalimu Mati said.

Mati said the Government procurement procedures were "flouted blatantly". Uhuru says the Passats would save Kenyans Sh2 billion annually. Mati further claimed CMC had loaned the Government US $24.2 million (Sh1.8 billion) in June 2003 to buy 522 of its vehicles, meant for the Office of the President.

According to the official statement of public debt, the CMC debt was repaid in 2004 Sh1,918,951.745.

Mati further said the Government had not accounted for the vehicles replaced in the financial year 2008/2009.

"How can we be assured they will be held accountable this time round?" said Mati.

Mati criticised the vehicle replacement scheme saying they offered insignificant savings.

Trim cabinet

Meanwhile, Assistant Minister for Roads Lee Kinyanjui has asked President Kibaki and the Prime Minister Raila Odinga to review the size of the Cabinet. Mr Kinyanjui said the Cabinet was bloated and the Budget was not capable of maintaining it.

Speaking yesterday at Nakuru West PCEA church in Nakuru, Kinyanjui also asked senior public servants who have not returned their fuel guzzlers to do so.

Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta Fuel Guzzlers Volkswagen Passat Mars Group Mwalimu Mati
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