Jubilee vice chairman David Murathe on Thursday denied benefiting from the Sh4 billion Kemsa tender awarded to Kilig Ltd.
The politician instead claimed the firm has two accounts at Equity and Kenya Commercial Bank and the latter has associates of Deputy President William Ruto as signatories.
Murathe, while before the Public Investments Committee of the National Assembly, said he has letters where KCB wrote to a Kilig lawyer indicating they were happy to finance the tender.
He said there was also a letter by Kemsa referring to the said account at KCB, further asking the committee to consider verifying his claims independently.
“It is incumbent upon this committee to find out who are the signatories to this account. You will find that the signatories are well-known business associates of the deputy president,” Murathe said.
The Jubilee vice chairman said the links to the tender – which Kemsa was forced to cancel after EACC stepped in – has made him a target for relatives seeking handouts.
“It is very sad when we allow this kind of innuendo and then you want to treat some of us as the poster boy of that kind of business.
“I have never supplied not even a single mask or PPE. It is so sad people think I am a Covid-19 millionaire and everybody who has a small problem is calling me for money,” he said.
Murathe said if there were Covid millionaires, then it could be Wilbroad Gatei and other people who are partners of Ruto.
He said he provided the same information to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission in September last year.
PIC chairman Abdulswamad Nassir said the committee would write to the bank to seek more information on the claims.
“These are Murathe’s words. We will have to do our own fact-finding as a committee. We will write to KCB as well as Kemsa to give us their correspondences with Kilig,” the Mvita MP said.
Last week, Murathe admitted that he was a bank guarantor for Kilig Ltd, which is among dozens of companies implicated in the Sh7.8 billion Kemsa scandal.
The politician had previously denied association with the firm and linked DP Ruto to the tender, a position he maintained on Thursday.
Kilig was awarded a Sh4 billion tender to supply 450,000 personal protective equipment kits (PPE) to the medical supplies authority, yet was not prequalified.
Murathe said he was requested by Kilig – then under the directorship of Wilbroad Gachoka and a Chinese national Zhu Jinping – to guarantee payments to a Chinese firm trading as ENTEC Ltd.
While before the committee on Thursday, Murathe said the associates of DP Ruto were represented by a lawyer known as Collins Bush Wanjala.
“When the company (Kilig) was issued with commitment letters, they were looking for financing, Collins Bush Wanjala represented the clients at the bank,” he said.
KCB on April 14, 2020, wrote to Kilig – to the attention of Wanjala, saying they were willing to provide letters of credit in favour of the Chinese supplier.
KCB cited an LPO from Kemsa to supply the PPE at $45 million and the companies’ good standing at the bank.