Bishop Margaret Wanjiru. Photo/FILE
Three permanent secretaries and a gospel ministry associated with an assistant minister are among hundreds of well-connected Kenyans allocated houses by a parastatal in controversial circumstances.
A recent special audit commissioned by the Inspector General of State Corporations revealed that the permanent secretaries were among senior public servants allocated houses in posh areas by the National Housing Corporation by making verbal requests.
They include Dr Mohamed Isahakia (PS, Office of the Prime Minister), Ms Dorothy Angote (PS Lands) and Ms Mary Ngari (PS Medical Services). Former State House Comptroller Hyslop Ipu was also allocated a house.
The audit also discovered that present and former members of the NHC board allocated themselves as many as five housing units, undermining the parastatal’s mandate of according affordable housing to Kenyans.
Among the current NHC board members who were allocated houses include chairman Bosire Ogero, who got five houses in Kileleshwa, Lang’ata, Madaraka ‘A’ and Kisii. Ms Angote is listed as the beneficiary of two houses located in Nairobi West and Kakamega, while Mrs Alice Mwololo, who represents the Finance PS on the board, was allocated two houses in Lang’ata and Nairobi West. Mr Victor Ogutu, who represents the Local Government PS on the board, was also allocated two houses in Madaraka ‘A’ and Mamboleo in Kisumu.
Incidentally, the report is signed by Dr Isahakia, who is listed among senior public servants allocated houses after making verbal requests. The investigating team established that 63 housing units were allocated under special requests from senior public servants, but only seven of the requests were supported by documentary evidence.
“The team noted that the requests for housing allocation whose documentary evidence could not be availed by management were reportedly verbal,” the auditors noted and warned that such scenario where verbal requests were made and granted could be misused.
Other prominent Kenyans who were allocated houses by making such requests include Kenya Railways boss Nduva Muli, the Director of Economic Affairs at the Ministry of Finance, Mr Justus Nyamunga as well as the Education Attache at the Kenya High Commission in London, UK, Dr Salome Gichura.
The list also includes Jesus is Alive Ministries associated with Housing assistant minister Bishop Margaret Wanjiru.
Acting Internal Security PS Mutea Iringo is among those whose requests are supported by documentary evidence.
The auditors discovered that 178 housing units were shared out by 63 NHC employees through multiple allocations with some getting as many as 11 units.
“It was observed that some members of staff, board members and some members of the public had been allocated several housing units under the scheme,” the report observes.
It added that such allocations negated the objective of the Tenant Purchase Scheme as it was not practical for a single tenant to occupy more than one unit at the same time.
It attributed the multiple allocation of houses to loopholes in the NHC policy documents which do not expressly prohibit more than one allocation.
It also questioned the rationale of allocating NHC staff 20 per cent of the housing units during the allocation.
The team, however, rejected a proposal by the board’s audit team that it repossess houses from those who benefited from double allocations, arguing that this would lead to legal suits being lodged against NHC.
It also disagreed with another recommendation that the NHC fires staff who benefited from multiple allocations, saying such a move would infringe on the rules of natural justice.
Last Updated (Wednesday, 27 June 2012 07:19)