The Ministry of Lands is on the spotlight after it emerged that it spent 27 million shillings in search for missing ends of Sellotape.
In the heist which took place in the last financial year, the Ministry hired 26 consultants who are experienced in complicated recoveries to help identify the missing ends, as well as train staff on how to identify the ends and keep track of the ends when not using the sellotape. Each consultant was paid 1 million shilling totaling to 26 million, with 800 thousand shillings going to transaction charges.
The figures are shocking, even to old corruption hands.
The Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee expressed mild surprise at the novel corruption. “While the end of a Sellotape is very elusive, the figure appears to be higher than we expected. It seems that these people are raising the corruption bar to a new level and we are afraid others will be forced to take up the challenge.”
The auditor general also expressed shock at the newly discovered corruption. “We expected the heist to come at the procurement, not during the use. This is a new high that the ministry of Lands has set.”
The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission recommended for a taskforce to be formed to identify manufacturers who have more friendly sellotape so that the government can avoid this wastage which would skyrocket once other government departments discover the loophole.
The Ministry was defensive, claiming that operations were being hampered by missing ends of sellotapes. “In one instance, operations were at a standstill for two weeks as our staff worked around the clock trying to figure out where the ends of sellotape were located. It is draining!”
The Ministry of Lands is a major consumer of Sellotape in Kenya as the millions of records they hold are torn, worn out and dilapidated. Although there are better ways of storing the records like use of electronic formats, the Ministry is keen on using paper which is more lucrative as users have to pay for missing files to appear and in the worst case scenario, a fire can be used to reset land ownership in the country.