Following a recommendation by the Governor’s Service Delivery Unit urging departmental heads to follow up on their projects implementation, some chief officers and directors have taken up the mantle by going to the field and sites on supervision mission. So far the chief officers for education, agriculture and directors Trade, water and public works have been actively monitoring all the rollover projects which were to end in September 30th.
According to head of GSDU Mrs. Pauline Onguko, completion of rollover projects have been expedited as a result of the follow up and so far only 20% are work in progress and some of the projects that had stalled have been terminated and reawarded to different contractors.
‘’ I appreciate the initiative taken by the said departmental heads. They have taken up the role of accounting officers. They follow up projects and have expedited the process of implementation thus putting contractors on toes hence quality work have been witnessed in our recent field visit on rollover projects completion,’’ said Madam Pauline.
Commenting on the impact of the field visit experience, the Chief Officer for Education Mr. Henry Ouma noted that project implementation is a major issue and as a department they have put keen interest in it having been cautioned and given deadline for the completion of roll over projects. He added that some time back, the department public of works would generate certificate of completion when actually the work had not been fully completed.
‘The governor had given a directive on the completion of roll over projects to be by the end of first quarter, we started going to the field to ascertain that all works had been done satisfactorily and with high quality before certificate of completion is generated to avoid signing payment vouchers when on the site a few things had not been done, which according to GSDU assessment report would term the project incomplete’ said Henry.
Mr. Ouma mentioned some of the challenges they have been experiencing to include, contractors using different companies to avoid being blacklisted when in the real sense they may not have enough capacity thus making some projects to stall. Again acting on recommendation on termination takes long and even issuing the contractors with default notices.
‘The department has woken up with the pressure and our completion rate will be much higher given that we have terminated some projects that have taken the contractors long to complete. Contractors are also aware that they have to abide by the timelines. It’s now upon the department of Finance to do the payments in good time,’ added Mr. Henry Ouma.
On the other hand Mr. Chris Owan’g, the Director Trade, who has also been active in field supervision since he assumed the office has asserted that most of his work will be in field.
‘Going to the field and project sites for purposes of supervision is part of my responsibility as it informs accurate and timely reporting. Again it pushes and motivates the contractor to do quality work and with speed within the timeline. I also need to grasp and be updated being that I am new in this office to help me in planning that is why I’m going to prepare a lot of default notices a decision which has been informed by close supervion, ‘ said Mr. Owan’g.
Mr. Owan’g added that some projects had been rolled over for example Ndori, Anyuongi, Kambajo market shades since financial year 2015/2016 due to delays by the contractor, contracts which the department is going to terminate.
Contractors have also appreciated the close supervision and one confessed to have gone back to the site for failure to do satisfactory job as per the recommendation of Chief Officer for Education as he could not be given certificate of completion.
The close supervision has seen contractors working closer with departments and PMC who have since been actively involved in implementation of Bill of Quantities and even raise alarm whenever shoddy work is witnessed. Some PMCs have even failed to sign certificate of completion in cases of unsatisfactory work.
‘There is improvement in terms of ownership of the projects by the community as they can now easily identify with the county government projects. This close follow up has seen some projects which had stalled terminated and rewarded. We urge other departments to follow suit and to ensure quality work. This spirit will ensure no roll overs this financial year or very few if any,’’ added Madam Pauline Onguko.
Project implementation for this financial year is just about to kick off after launching.