The Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation (REREC) has gone into an image saving public relations drive.
For two days now, the conman and looter Chairman of the board Prof. Simon Gicharu has paid some Twitter users to sell the company, but its shoddy works cannot go unnoticed.
Yesterday, a hashtag #RERECMashinani was trending on Twitter, Tuesday morning, the hashtag that has been sponsored is #RERECMashinaniKE.
This is all being done to cover the corruption and looting at the agency charged with spearheading Kenya’s green energy drive, in addition to implementing rural electrification projects.
Earlier in the year, REREC was exposed for overpricing fake electricity poles under the guise of going green.
The firm designed a tender to fit a specific company known as Ecopole.
Corruption in procurement
This tender has been designed for a company called Ecopole, which President Uhuru Kenyatta went to visit in Limuru last year. A cabinet paper was passed by PS Energy to approve the use of composite and KPLC, as well as Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation (Rerec), were forced to procure 60,000 poles at 60,000 but with bulk order to be reduced to Sh55,000 per pole. This is thrice the price of concrete poles.
Kenya Power & Lighting Company Plc (KPLC) Bernard Ngugi MD refused to procure for the last 4 months and thus tender was channelled through Rerec, by CEO and Chairman both from Mount Kenya.
Technology has not been proven anywhere and is 3 times the price of concrete poles.
The tender document specifications are as Ecopoles brochure, and the standard is for poles being dropped from a forklift at 3 metres high, which is a farce considering that there is no such test in the world. The product doesn’t conform to any International Standard for Composites and has never been used anywhere in the world, though it is marketed as Norwegian and United Nations (UN) etc.
There are local manufacturers who have set up a plant for real composite products but they have been sidelined by the tender document which has covered sizes, strengths and designs of Ecopole.
Ecopole is a rudimentary technology never proven anywhere with false claims of UN goals etc and no certification of such approvals. Furthermore, it states that it is fully recyclable but it is foam filled which isn’t recyclable anywhere in the world. Basically, a waterpipe stuffed with bamboo twigs and filled with foam.
This is high-level impunity calling for delivery of 15,000 poles in 7 months, why the rush for the delivery, does REREC install 15,000 poles in 7 months.
This corruption must be stopped.