By JOHN NGIRACHU
Millions of shillings went to waste in Brazil after the Kenya’s Olympics Committee paid for expensive rooms for use by President Uhuru Kenyatta and Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario but which were not used.
Stephen arap Soi, who was Chief de Mission for the Kenyan team, said the decision to book the rooms was made at a meeting attended by the Cabinet Secretary and Principal Secretary Richard Ekai in June.
“The direction that I was given was ‘you leave one room in the cruise ship in the event that the Head of State decides to come to Rio’. We were playing $605 per day for 18 days. Bed and breakfast,” said Mr Soi.
He said the rooms on the cruise ship were never used meaning that the Sh2.2 million used to pay for the rooms went to waste.
He said he was also asked to reserve two rooms at the cost $564 per day for the heads of the Labour and Social Welfare Committees in the Senate and the National Assembly.
As top government officials savoured the good life in Rio, Kenyan athletes were mistreated.
“Colleagues that we were with know clearly where I stayed because we all stayed in the same place,” said David Were, the chairman of the National Assembly Committee whose inquiries into the matter began yesterday.
Mr Soi said he was also asked to book rooms for the two Principal Secretaries in the ministry at a hotel where the Cabinet Secretary eventually also stayed.
PAID FOR IN ADVANCE
The chairman of the Sports Fund, the presidents of Athletics Kenya, National Sports Council, the Solicitor-General and the Controller of Budget also got rooms.
All these were paid for in advance, meaning a total Sh7.19 million was spent on accommodation for the top government officials.
Mr Soi said the chairman of Sports Fund and the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya eventually took the rooms booked for the heads of the parliamentary committees.
He said that while he was mainly in charge of the accommodation arrangements for the athletes staying in the Olympic Village, he was aware of the plans for the rest as he was overall in charge of every Kenyan connected to the Olympics.