Israeli government intervenes to save stalled Galana Kulalu scheme

A combine harvester harvesting maize at the Galana-Kulalu scheme in Tana River PHOTO COURTESY

Kenya and Israeli governments are engaging over the completion of model farms at Galana Kulalu food security project which has stalled.

Speaking in Nairobi, Israeli Deputy Ambassador to Kenya Ayal David said that the two governments have intervened and are in talks to resolve the issue.

“Talks are going on to resolve the issue,” David said

Israeli firm Green Arava was contracted to put up model irrigation farms on a 10,000-acre piece at the Galana Kulalu food security project.

The firm sought a contract extension to complete the work forcing the government to invoke contract terms of charging Green Arava 10,000 shillings per day for the delay.

Meanwhile, the project is 85 percent complete but the Ambassador said that the row is likely to be resolved soon.

Unfortunately, the firm did not complete the work within the contract term.

This saw the government offer an extension for Green Arava to compete with it. While at it, the government invoked contract terms billing Green Arava 10,000 shillings per day as it worked to complete the work.

This angered Green Arava that petitioned the government to reconsider this prompting Kenya to name a task force from among others the Attorney General, National Treasury, Ministry of Agriculture, to resolve the impasse.

David is hopeful that Green Arava would soon commence operations in Galana to complete the work.

The Galana Model Farm which covers a 10,000 acres contract was awarded to Green Arava of Israel at a contract sum of KES 14,545,106,963.00 in September 2014.

The contract was later revised to KES 7,294,853,036.00 after the deferment of some items.

The contract was for a duration of 30 calendar months and was expected to be completed in March 2016, whereby the contractor was expected to complete the construction/installation of irrigation infrastructure within 18 months and test the system during defects liability period of 12 months.

 The contract was later extended twice and was expected to be completed by 20th January 2018 but the works are still not complete standing at 85 percent.