The National Social Security Fund (NSSF) is free to restart the construction work of the stalled Hazina Towers after the High Court reinstated an injunction stopping the work.
Public Investment Committee (PIC) of the National Assembly, heard that the High Court had allowed the construction to resume, two years after it was halted following a successful plea by the Nakumatt Holding Limited.
Committee chairman Adan Keynan told Nakumatt Holding Chief Executive Atul Shah that the High Court issued the orders on Monday and that NSSF was free to resume construction.
However, Shah told the committee that he was shocked with the news saying that it was the first time that the matter was coming to his attention.
But a dismayed Keynan said it was shocking that Shah had not been informed of the “big news” by his lawyers a day after the ruling was passed.
“Surely, Shah you cannot tell the committee that you are not privy to the ruling even as you sit next to your lawyer who was prosecuting the case,” Keynan said.
Earlier, Nakumatt Limited lawyer Manasses Mwangi was barred from addressing committee after he was accused of demeaning it.
Mwangi had in his report to the committee accused members Muthomi Njuki and Conley Serem of acting in arrogance by accusing Nakumatt of being contemptuous to the committee.
Keynan termed the statement disparaging and directed that the report be expunged from parliament’s record.
NSSF had warned that it was bound to lose billions of shillings if the project is halted and wanted the injunction lifted to pave way for the constructor to resume the work of the 39 storey building.
Auditor General Edward Ouko had pointed out in his report last year that the continued stalemate with Nakumatt Holdings over the construction of an additional 36 floors was likely to lead to escalation of costs and possible claims for compensation by the contractor.
“At the time of stoppage of construction works, a total of Sh. 1,912,043,004 had been paid to the contractor,” Ouko observed.