Mitchel Cotts, a company linked to Baringo Senator Gideon Moi and retired President Daniel arap Moi’s aide Joshua Kulei is among the companies given a tender two years ago to construct a peripheral cargo storage facilities on behalf of the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) next to the Nairobi Inland Container Deport (ICD).
The move came after the government issued a decree that clearance of cargo from Mombasa be done at the Embakasi ICD in Nairobi.
The peripheral cargo storage facilities were meant to store cargo which had overstayed at the ICD, reported to be a total of over 30,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) containers at that time.
The move is suspected to have been artificially instigated to rekindle hopes of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), whose cargo transportation business was not doing so well.
The Nation reports that after the decree was issued, container traffic on the SGR shot up by four times.
The ICD could only handle 15,000 TEUs, hence this created another avenue for cartels to loot through construction of the peripheral cargo storage facilities.
In order to address the congestion issue, KPA was allowed to lease Periphery Storage Facilities (PSFs) outside the ICD.
Despite not being among the 30 companies that tendered for the contracts, Mitchel Cotts won the tender alongside Nairobi Inland Cargo Terminal, a company linked to little known Mr John Katiku. It is however believed that the company is owned by senior politicians.
Several senior KPA managers, including embattled MD Daniel Manduku, and KRA Commissioner for Customs Kevin Safari have been questioned by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations over the same, and could be charged soon.