KEMSA Confirms Regrettable 2bn Loss, Shares Lessons Learnt with Senate Health Committee
TUESDAY, 1st December – The Kenya Medical Supplies Agency (KEMSA) has confirmed that it stands to incur a minimum loss of KES 2bn, as prices of COVID-19 products and technologies regularize in the free market.
In an inspection tour of the KEMSA Embakasi Warehouse by the Senate Committee on Health, Ag CEO Edward Njuguna revealed that out of the stock worth 5.97bn held at the Agency, with prevailing market trends, it could only recoup 3.9bn.
“The projected loss of 2bn further increases with each passing day that we have the system stock at our Warehouses. Granted, there are lessons that we as Agency have learnt from this unprecedented COVID process,” the Ag CEO regretted.
“Part of the reforms would be to eliminate small traders from our supply chain and focus on local manufacturers.”
The Committee through Ag Chair Sen (Dr) Abdullahi Ali, noting that the move would allow KEMSA to benefit from competitive pricing and economies of scale, questioned the framework the Agency would use to support direct purchases from manufacturers.
“The Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act doesn’t provide a legal framework for this, but there is the Government Policy on ‘Buy Kenya, Build Kenya’ in force. We also have a Master Roll of Pharmaceutical Products compiled by The Ministry of Trade and Industrialization, which can be used,” noted Edward Buluma, Ag Procurement Director.
The meeting also discussed the COVID-19 Medical Donations received from various Agencies, Embassies and Philanthropists, with KEMSA confirming that all donations had been accounted for; committing to forward the donation distribution list to the Committee.
The Health Committee is conducting an inquiry into the alleged irregular award of COVID-19 tenders worth KES 7.6 bn.
Senators present at the meeting include: Sen Millicent Omanga, Sen Fred Outa, Sen Beatrice Kwamboka, Sen Mary Seneta and Sen Ledama Olekina.