Businessman explains to court how his business partner lost Sh180m at Ruto office

By Sheila Mutua On Thu, 21 Jan, 2021 13:12 | 3 mins read

A businessman on Thursday told a Nairobi court that the Office of the Deputy President (DP) William Ruto was used to trick into signing a Sh300 million fake laptops tender.

In his testimony before Nairobi Chief Magistrate Martha Mutuku, Charles Kamolo Musinga said the fake tender deal that lost them Sh180 million was done in DP Ruto’s Third-Floor office, Room 003 at the Harambee House Annex.

“Further to my statement which I made on 13th August 2018, I would like to state that I took police officer to the office of Deputy President where I identified the office where we had gone on 30th may 2016 between 8:00 to 9:00 having used the VIP lift to the third-floor room 003 door number 005 where we found Muhoro seated as an employee of the government,” read Musinga’s statement.

Musinga and Stephen Ngei Musyoka are co-directors at Makindu Motors Limited, where each owns 50% shares of the company. They are both complainants in the fake tender case.

Further, Musing told the court that he was approached by Augustine Matata, one of the accused seven, who told him that there were new tenders that were advertised and asked him to apply for one.

On May 18, 2018, Solomon Muema, one of his workers, informed him that he had received an email indicating that Makindu Motors Limited had been shortlisted to participate in the 2018-/2019 tenders.

Thereafter, Matata arranged for a meeting at Ole Sereni Hotel where they also met with a woman who introduced her Miss Muhoro.

Musinga said Miss Muhoro claimed that she was in charge of procurement business at the office of the DP.

In addition, Musinga told the court that Miss Muhoro claimed that she was the secretary to Mr. Wanyonyi, a purported assistant to the DP.

After the meeting at the hotel, Miss Muhoro promised to arrange for another meeting at her office situated at the DP’s Harambee House Annex to finalize the supplies tender.

Further, Musinga said that on May 30, 2015, they were invited to the DP’s office by Miss Muhoro where they were picked by an unidentified person who escorted them to the Third Floor, Room 3, using the VIP lift.

In the room, Musangi said that they found Miss Muhoro seated and she affirmed to them that they had been shortlisted to supply laptops for the Ministry of Devolution.

Then, Miss Muhoro gave them a non-disclosure agreement dated March 30, 2018, Musangi said.

He told the court the tender was to supply 2,800 laptops valued at Sh269,000,000 and his co-director, Ngei, agreed to finance the project.

On June 28, 2018, Musangi said they found a supplier, and the laptops were delivered to Treasury Building as per Miss Muhoro’s instructions. The laptops, Musangi said, were received by Christian Mwendwa, who signed the delivery note.

He said all the laptops were supplied in trust that they would be taken to DP’s office since they had had already been physically there during the meeting.

The other co-accused alongside Matata are Allan Chesan, Teddy Awiti, Kevin Nyongesa, Joy Kamau, James William Makokha alias Wanyonyi and Johan Ochieng Osore.

The seven were charged with the Sh180 million fake laptop tender.

The seven, jointly with others not before the court, were accused of offering a tender document under the name of the Office of Deputy President for the supply of 2,800 laptops with intent to defraud.

The court heard that the offense was committed on diverse dates between May 30, 2018, and August 12, 2018.

In the second count, the suspects were charged with making a document without authority.

The court heard that they made an LPO document purporting it to be a genuine Local Purchase Order issued by an assistant procurement officer at the Office of the Deputy President.

The seven were also accused of obtaining goods by false pretense.

They allegedly obtained the laptops, the property of Makidu Motors Limited which is situated on the Mombasa-Nairobi highway, by purporting that they had a genuine tender document from DP’s office.

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