Ketraco admits flaws in tendering for key power line

President Uhuru Kenyatta, Deputy President Dr. William Ruto, Marsabit County Governor Mohamud Ali and Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter tour the Lake Turkana Wind Power Switch Yard during the official inauguration of the Lake Turkana Wind Power Project and the commissioning of the Loiyangalani-Suswa Transmission Line in Loiyangalani, Marsabit County in 2019 [Courtesy]

The Kenya Electricity Transmission Company (Ketraco) yesterday acknowledged the tendering process for the Loiyangalani-Suswa power line may have been flawed, which ended up being costly for taxpayers.

The company’s senior officials told the National Assembly’s Public Investments Committee the selection of Isolux Ingenieria SA may not have met the threshold set by procurement laws.

Lake Turkana Wind Power (LTWP) played a critical role in the selection of the Spanish company to build the line but faced financial difficulties and could not complete the line on time.

The delays were costly as Ketraco had to procure another company to finish the line as well as pay penalties for failure to avail the transmission line to LTWP, without which it could not sell electricity to Kenya Power.

Acting Ketraco chief executive Anthony Wamukota said there may have been a conflict of interest in LTWP selecting the contractor.

“I have a problem with that (LTWP playing a role in selecting the contractor). LTWP is an interested party. LTWP had a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Kenya Power (which said that) in the event the project experienced delays beyond the agreed completion date, there is a penalty,” he told the committee, responding to questions on whether it was right for LTWP to procure the contractor for the line.