Chief of staff in the Office of the President Nzioka Waita and renowned economist David Ndii on Tuesday had an ugly Twitter spat over a Nation article that claimed President Uhuru Kenyatta was set to travel to France to secure a loan.
Daily Nation through its online platforms had reported that Kenyatta was scheduled to sign a public-private partnership (PPP) deal worth Sh180 billion for the dualling of the 190-kilometre Rironi-Nakuru-Mau Summit Road.
Reacting to the article, Waita questioned its credibility, terming it an outright lie. According to Nzioka, the president was not going for a loan.
"Nation, how does a PPP become a loan? Your story is an outright lie. The Nakuru-Mau Summit Super Highway will be a TOLL road given to a concessionaire to finance, build and operate. Through the Toll Fund recently enacted by the National Assembly, the government of Kenya will guarantee the availability of traffic," stated Nzioka in a tweet rebutting the Nation story.
His tweet caught the attention of Ndii who to some extent agreed with the Nation story.
“guarantee availability of traffic” means that if toll revenue does not meet hurdle rate, Govt meets the shortfall. And usually the project cost is inflated so that if hurdle rate is say 15% the actual ROI is probably 20%. Its called “de-risking”. In short, its off-budget debt,” Ndii opined.
The exchange further escalated with both parties tearing each other apart and making unsubstantiated claims.
Below are the screenshots from their Twitter spat: