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Shocking details of massive looting at East African Portland Cement Company, directors still walking at large

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Just what is happening at the East African Portland Cement Company (EAPCC), a once giant in the industry? Well, 254News has learnt that the company’s current liabilities exceed its current assets by Ksh6 billion, with staff costs taking up close to half of the revenues.

It’s shocking that East African Portland Cement has been making sh8 million loss daily, hurting revenue and profit. The company directors have been rewarding themselves heavily in terms of sitting allowances resulting to the company making huge losses.

According to reports, the massive looting at the East African Portland Cement Company heightened in 2019 even as the former managing director Peter Ole Nkeri finally left the company. He was replaced in acting capacity by Stephen Nthei who is hardly in charge.

“Nthei is hardly in charge. The board chairman Edwin Murithi Kinyua is always here everyday jumping from one meeting to another – and all are promptly paid for. In fact, he is more busy here than an MD is. He reports before 8 am and sometimes leaves as late as 11pm,” a source is quoted saying.

According to documents seen by 254News, EAPCC chairman Edwin Muriithi Kinyua pocketed Sh10,315,429.

“ONLY IN Kenya: A chairman of a parastatal pays himself for 5 meetings a day, each costing a whopping Sh64,285 yet employees of the East African Portland Cement Company are sacked enmasse and evacuated by anti-riot police without pay. Sad” reads COFEK statement in part

The former MD Simon Ole Nkeri paid himself Sh23,515,892.

The new National Social Security Fund (NSSF) managing trustee Dr Anthony Omerikwa pocketed Sh985,714.

The  NSSF Finance and Investment Moses Cheseto took in Sh900,000

Current Environment Permanent Secretary and former Industrialization PS Betty Maina, over and above her salary, was paid Sh342,857. 

The alternate to the Industrialization PS, styling himself as Technical Adviser to the Cabinet Secretary for Industry, Trade and Cooperatives Charles Mahinda, a civil servant, pocketed Sh1,127.143. Mr Mahinda is separately reported to have successfully frustrated the operation of a parasatal formed in 2014 but which has never met – Scrap Metal Council – thanks to strong forces reportedly using him to keep the parastatal impotent. 

Another civil servant, Edward Kariungu Wamweya, the alternate director to the Cabinet Secretary at the National Treasury Ukur Yatani pocketed a cool Sh647,427 while his other colleague at the Treasury, Humphrey Njoroge Muhu took away ShSh1.543,116. 

Former long serving chairman at the Capital Markets Authority Kung’u Gatabaki pocketed Sh4,506,546. He is Chairman for Letshego Kenya Ltd., Chairman of Karume Investments Ltd., Chairman at Computer Source Point Ltd. and Director & Marketing Director at Grain Bulk Handlers Ltd as well as Jacaranda Hotels. 

Eastern and Southern Africa Management Institute (ESAMI)’s Professor Sarone Ole Sena took in a whopping Sh3,741,201. 

This means averagely Muriithi Kinyua attended at least 736 meetings in less than a year while pocketing an average of sh14, 000 as sitting allowance per meeting. This means he had at least 74 meetings per month. In a week of 5 days adding upto 20 days each, it means Mr Kinyua held an average of 3 meetings per day. 

Dr Omerikwa attended 64 meetings; PS Betty Maina attended 25 meetings.

The Industrialization Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya’s “technical adviser” and alternate to PS Dr Francis Owino would have attended 81 meetings.

Kung’u Gatabaki must have at least attended 322 meetings in less than a year. 

“Mr Kinyua pays himself Sh64,285.71 per every meeting with monthly honoraria of Sh80,000. Too many “special board meetings”. Normally, boards meets at least once every 3 months. In the event of special board meetings, they would not be more than 2 in every quarter.” COFEK revealed.

On November 26, 2019 Mr Kinyua was paid for 4 meetings in clear abuse of office. He pocketed Sh257,140 in one day. Incidentally, he is said to have attended a Presidential Conference at the KICC. Knowing the duration of such meetings and the traffic between Nairobi and Athi River, it is not clear how Mr Kinyua reportedly attended a special board, then moved over to “prize giving captain prize and ended the day “officiating captain prize”. This means that Mr Kinyua will be paid twice-in-one meeting. Perhaps he was paid for attending the prize giving ceremony as one meeting – and separately, as another meeting when he rose to “officiate” the same prize giving ceremony!

On October 25, he was paid twice for the same kind of meeting. For meeting Kenya Commercial Bank lawyers, same day – Mr Kinyua was paid for a third meeting each Sh64,285 same day. On October 23, he had 3 meetings – two in one and again he reportedly met the “KCB lawyers”. It is not clear how and why he met KCB lawyers severally. 

Mr Kinyua said all is not gloom though. “Government has approved a restructuring or re-engineering plan of EAPCC. He says the board has saved Sh600 million in 9 months.”

In August tens of hundreds workers were cleared redundant at EAPCC. Roles of the sacked employees’ were later merged and salaries reduced to as low as 40 per cent in what insiders said was a take-or-leave it. Many of the staff left the firm without their salaries which has not been paid to date. This massive sacking of staffs is questionable. How can you send such a huge number of workers home? Do you want to sabotage the operation of the company?

It’s reported that a senior manager had taken leave on a mission to buy MPs on trade and labour committee to write a report to exonerate him from corruption issues that the committee has evidence of how Ole Nkeri had tried to syphon EAPCC to bring it down & auction it.

“They want to sell the huge EAPCC land at only Sh5 million per acre. They are outsourcing almost everything from packing of cement, operations of clinic, security services , quarry activities, transport of materials and other work to themselves. I even hear they want the company to come down before they sell it to a very prominent family,” a source further revealed.

It is at the dying EAPCC where board of directors openly decide who is given what job. “They have replaced our colleagues. We don’t know how they procured. But more so, like other supplies, all of them are related to the directors by either blood, marriage and or business ties,” a staff confirmed.

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