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Tribalism, Corruption Paralyses Operations At St Mary’s Hospital

st mary's hospital, father fryda
/ COURTESY
st mary's hospital, father fryda
/ COURTESY

Assumption Sisters of Nairobi (ASN) nuns are decrying the ongoing corruption and misuse of funds within the St Mary’s Hospital, Lang’ata and the other in Elementaita.

According to insider sources, the problem started a few years back after the court handed over the Sh3 billion St Mary’s Hospital Church to ASN from Father William Charles Fryda.

The protracted legal battle pit Fr Fryda against the Catholic Church for over 5 years.

Reports indicate that the hospital’s seed money was Sh3.9 million donated by America’s Leonard Zetah Trust in 1997 and other donations quickly followed in excess of Sh90 million.

A source within ASN tells Kahawa Tungu that while the land on which the hospital sits belongs to the Catholic Church, the facility is rightfully owned by Fr Fryda.

In 2017 after winning the court case, ASN froze accounts held by St Mary’s Hospital and through their lawyer, Wanja Wambugu had the accounts active within no time. The signatories were assigned by the Superior General and the lawyer.

Financial Mismanagement

Two years down the line, the Superior General has withdrawn huge amounts of money from the facility’s coffers. So far the Superior General has irregularly withdrawn Sh145 million from various bank accounts held by the hospital.

The source notes that the monies came from accounts in GT Bank and Prime Bank.

Apart from the money, the Superior General liquidated government bonds worth Sh12 million and through the Finance Manager Anthony Masaku received a further Sh12 to 14 million by June 2018.

The monies were apparently not used in the development of the facility that is supposed to be serving thousands of poor patients.

The funds, Kahawa Tungu was told were shared amongst the Superior General, an auctioneer identified as Zacharia Baraza, head of the Catholic Church in Kenya Cardinal John Njue and the Police spokesperson Charles Owino.

Mr owino, the source added ensured that Fr Fryda was not an impediment during the wrangle.

Sister Bernadette Ndele Munyao who took over the leadership of the ASN nuns in 2015 is said to have delivered the money in cash to Cardinal Njue.

Currently, the advocate Wambugu and the Superior General are chasing some money from the Medical Mission Trust which belongs to Fr Fryda.

There has been talk of fraudulent payments within the organization whereby after winning the High Court case, lawyer Wambugu presented ASN with a Sh120 million invoice while the auctioneer, Baraza asked for Sh15 million. He has however received in excess of Sh55 million, Kahawa Tungu understands.

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Tribalism

Those privy to the details indicate that while the money was withdrawn in the full knowledge of the trustees, only those hailing from the Kamba community knew about the irregular payments and withdrawals.

The two from the Mt Kenya region have been identified as Sisters Anne Waruguru and Irene Kariuki.

Demonstrating how the tribal card is played, our source noted that the St Mary’s Manager is Sr Petronella Mueni who replaced a Mr Audi.

The reception manager has been identified as Marianna Mwikali who took over from Zipporah Wawira while the Chief Nurse post in Elementaita was handed to Sr Matilda Kavinya. Her post was previously held by Ruth Opiyo.

In Langa’ta for example, Sr Jane Wanjiku Chege, a highly qualified Nurse and a Lecturer at Regina Pacis University College, was best suited to be the Chief Nurse in Lang’ata, despite ASN nuns recommendations, the Superior General decided to go for Sr Constantine Chepchirchir Bett who apparently has no qualifications to hold the position.

Sr Constantine came from Assumption Sisters of Eldoret where she was discontinued because of her behavior. Word reaching Kahawa Tungu indicates that she leaves the convent on Friday afternoons and comes back either on Sunday night or Monday morning sometimes wreaking of alcohol.

She recently shocked the ASN nuns when she claimed she had been bewitched by a Sr Petronella.

“Sr Constantine is a real embarrassment to the Assumptions Sisters of Nairobi but being a confidant of Superior General and possibly in the same cult, we have less to say. She is a blood sister to Fr Luke Bett of Dominican Fathers who was recently involved in a sex scandal of all times,” our source added.

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Criminal Activities

The auctioneer of questionable integrity Mr Baraza is allegedly a well-known criminal auctioneer who enjoys immense protection from senior security operatives in Nairobi.

He recently had his bank accounts frozen due to the Sh468 million National Youth Service (NYS) saga. He is also said to have swindled money from Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho’s elder brother Abubakar Joho.

He has also been accused of issuing bouncing cheques to MOFA Security firm for Services offered to St Mary’s Mission Hospitals during transition of management. MOFA is now moving to Court enjoining the Hospital in the suit.

Our source also indicates that Baraza refused to pay a Cleaning Company for services offered to St Mary’s Mission Hospitals. The owner, Mr Sangira has vowed to follow up on the case.

Langata police have also recently indicated that he (Baraza) refused to pay them over Sh300,000 for the services that they provided during the Hospital take-over from Fr Fryda.

The ASN nuns now want DCI George Kinoti and the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji to look into the allegations that have left the hospital in a sorry state.

Do you know of a sensitive story you would like us to get our hands on? Email your news TIPS to news@kahawatungu.com  or WhatsApp +254708677607. 

Written by Eva Nyambura

Content creator at Kahawatungu.com | Passionate about telling the untold story. Lover of life, music and technology. Simplicity is KEY

Email: news@kahawatungu.com

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