By Tobby Otum
The construction of the controversial state-of-the-art Kenya Maritime Authority [KMA] towers in Mombasa County needed structural support to save it from collapsing due the instability of the ground on which it was being built.
Senior principal architect and project manager from the ministry of public works Henry Kahiga Mbugua told the Parliamentary committee on transport that this was discovered during an excavation at the site.
Mbugua told the committee led by temporary chairman Arama Samuel that this led to the rise of the cost of construction from over Sh 1.7 billion to almost Sh 2.1 billion.
“The geothermal survey was in addition to another one which was done before construction had commenced,” he pointed out in his presentation to the committee during their fact finding tour at the site.
His remarks follow the realization that the government will be forced to spend an extra Sh 300 million from the taxpayer for the completion of the controversial KMA towers.
The KMA project manager told the committee the second geothermal survey established a different report from the one which had been done earlier.
Mbugua said they were forced to factor in structural support as a result of the report from the second survey to save the building from collapsing.
“The first survey at the site was done before the ground was excavated,” he pointed out while trying to explain to the committee how the cost of the project had risen from the initial amount.
Vocal committee member Dominic Kipkoech Koskei who is Sotik legislator differed with the Shipping and Maritime Principal Secretary Nancy Karigithu that the project is at 96 per cent complete.
He dismissed her statement to her face pointing out that she was lying.
“I am talking from the point of view of an engineer and before we embark on a tour of the facility I can tell you that the project is from complete,” he said.