Rogue, Dangerous Mercy Waihiga Wanjiku and George Aketch charged with Sh 28Million Afya House tender Scam

A businessman and a woman were on Tuesday charged with obtaining more than Sh28 million from a supplier through a fake Ministry of Health tender.

George Aketch and Mercy Waihiga Wanjiku alias Linda Masaka allegedly obtained the cash from Ibrahim Aden by pretending they could secure him a tender to supply hospital equipment. They denied the charges.

The two suspects appeared before Milimani senior resident magistrate Zainab Abdul and were charged afresh with fraud and forgery on a consolidated charge sheet.

At the same time, the magistrate ordered Aketch to add Sh170,000 to his previous bail of Sh30,000 pending the hearing of the case on April 12.

The charge sheet says with others not before the court, Aketch and Wanjiku obtained from Aden 1,000 pieces of non-contact infrared thermometers worth Sh5.7 million through a tender and a local purchase order both purported to be from the Ministry of Health.

They allegedly committed the offence on May 8, last year at Digital Marketing Ltd, located at Dunhill building in Westlands in Nairobi.

The suspects also obtained from Aden 1,640 boxes of hand gloves worth Sh7,415,000 through a fake May 2020 local purchase order.

The duo is further accused of forging a letter of the Ministry of Health purporting it to be a genuine notification of award for a tender.

Wanjiku is separately charged with forging a stamp in the name of Principal Secretary, Ministry of Health.

Further, she is charged with obtaining from Aden Sh1 million as inducement for her to accept a consignment of below-standard hand gloves.

In May last year, Health CS Mutahi Kagwe admitted the existence of criminal elements at Afya House who collude with cartels to pilfer public resources.

He said the architects of the scam were using contacts at the ministry to con businessmen of cash.