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Registrar among top judicial officers quizzed

By Saturday Standard Reporter | September 8th 2018
Chief Justice David Maraga alongside Chief Registrar Anne Amadi during a press conference in Nairobi on August 29, 2018 [David Njaaga/Standard]

Chief Registrar Anne Amadi is among the hordes of senior Judiciary staffers who have recorded statements over a medical insurance scam shaping up at the institution.

The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) is investigating over 30 top Judiciary officers over a Sh800 million staff medical cover scandal that is said to have happened under her watch.

The officials are said to have played a role in the renewal of a medical cover after receiving a proposal of a one-year contract of Sh808,056,889 from the initial Sh648,297,521 that was approved and terminated a few days later.

Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji recently asked the EACC to probe issues raised by the Judiciary’s internal audit regarding a demand note of January 19, 2017 on insurance medical cover and the contract for the provision of security services, both totaling Sh122, 179,989.

Investigators are interested in knowing how the amount on the demand note was reached at, even after the Judiciary extended termination of the contract with the insurer from November 2, 2016 to February 2, 2017 to enable fresh tendering.

In a letter dated July 26, 2017, the EACC had requested to interview 29 officers drawn from departments such as HR, Finance and Supplies and some deputy registrars.

The officers included Helen Okwani (deputy registrar Court of Appeal), Judith Omange (deputy registrar High Court), Philip Kakai (Deputy Finance Director), Angela Manyalla (HR Director), Elijah Owino (Principal Accountant), David Rapando (Finance Director), Steven Ikileng (ICT), Gitau Kariuki (Tender Committee Secretary), among others.

“The officers may come with any document that can assist us during the interview, including appointment letters to the Tender Committee touching on the provision of medical cover for members of the Judiciary,” stated EACC’s Director of Forensic Investigations John Lolkoloi.

In correspondent seen by the Saturday Standard, the Judiciary entered the contract for the provision of group medical insurance with one of Kenya’s leading companies on September 10, 2015.

The one-year contract had a condition that upon expiry, it be renewed for a further 12 months on mutual consent of both parties, subject to satisfactory performance.

However, when it expired, the Judiciary Tender Committee approved the renewal for two months to allow for fresh tendering process.

Amadi wrote to the company on August 20, 2016, saying the contract had been renewed for the two months under the same terms and conditions.

“The extension of the contract is for two months with effect from September 1, 2016 to October 31, 2016. You are now required to give a formal unconditional written acceptance of this offer,” she wrote.

However, the insurer rejected the offer to extend the contract for two months under the same terms but provided options for renewal and a shot-term cover proposal.

“The Judiciary also notes that the revised terms substantially deviate from the terms and conditions of the original/ current contract, which according to law should then be a new contract,” Amadi said in another letter to the insurer dated August 20, 2016.

Amadi requested the insurer to allow three visits per family to Nairobi Hospital, Aga Khan and Karen, Mombasa and Gertrudes Children’s hospitals without co-pay.

On August 26, 2016, the committee rejected the insurer’s deal due to change in benefit structure for the staff.

However, a few days later, the Human Resource Department tabled fresh submissions on benefits for renewal of the contract for a period of one year.

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