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Iqbal Khandwala’s dirty deals milking the dilapidated Coast General Hospital dry

The Chief Executive Officer of the struggling Coast General Teaching and Referal Hospital Mr. Iqbal Khandwala has turned the public health facility into his money making machine through corrupt dealings.

Khandwala runs a ring made up of senior officials who are out to enrich themselves with total disregard to the public. The rogue chief executive had to be forced to rescind inhumane decision he made last month that would force patients to pay cash deposits before being admitted at the public health facility.

A lobby group championing for human rights through its leader Julius Ogogo had to threaten the administration of Governor Hassan Joho (Mombasa County) with a legal action if they went ahead with the planned privatization of Coast General Hospital.

The secret move by the government of the fashionista governor would see thousands of poor patients in Mombasa County locked out of the facility.

Governor Joho and his staff are heavily covered by the county government scheme but there is a rampant behaviour among his staff colluding with insurance companies for kickbacks.

Most of waste tax payers’ money is wasted at the prestigious and expensive Mombasa Hospital where staffers move in to eat biscuits and pork over small ailments, lengthy admissions and exaggerated bills.

With health function still remaining a challenging role for the devolved units, wolves like Khandwala have hijacked public health facilities, not to make them better but milk them dry under the watch of county authorities and national government.

According to an internal memo dated November 24, 2020, the secret move to force poor patients to pay upfront fees before admission was a ploy to fill gaps left by waivers at CGTRH with a blind eye turned on the looting Khandwala.

“In order to mitigate the effects of waivers in the hospital, the CGTRH has directed that selected cases will be required to pay an upfront deposit before being admitted. All surgeries will be Sh40,000 and medical cases Sh20,000,” the letter read in part.

The memo was addressed to the billing section, finance and casualty with emphasis to have emergency cases paid for within 48 hours after admission.

The move was to take effect on December 1 despite the ravaging covid-19 crisis but was cancelled on November 30th before Governor Joho turned it into ‘a political currency’ together with the case that was looming.

“Upon further discussions, it has been decided that the memo on payment of deposits stand suspended to allow further deliberations and categorisation of the procedures and charges,” the second memo read.

The second one was signed by M Ochola for Khandwala who felt disappointed after his money making move hit a snag with the cancelation.

The move to charge poor patients was controversial given that a Mombasa based philanthropist Asu of Mombasa Cement has stationed his servants at the Coast General Hospital to offset bills for under privileged patients.

The cement maker has also stationed a Sh50 million oxygen plant at the facility to benefit patients who are unable to settle such bills.

“If Mombasa Cement has been paying for patients who are unable to settle their bills why would the hospital administration be in hurry to introduce charges during this difficult period. This is part of the conspiracy of the county government looters,” one health worker said.

Governor Joho’s administration had advertised the same project with bidders are lined up to have their bids before December 16 in what looks like a pure plot to loot in collision with the hospital officials.

A similar project is already undertaken and complete by Mombasa Cement for free and is only awaiting commissioning.

The county government of Mombasa wants to award tender number CGM/CGTRH/03/2020-2021 for supply, installation, testing and commissioning of ‘another oxygen’ that may never see the light of the day since one is already in place. The tender is a looting plot.

It will be awarded to individuals whose dubious companies will be used to loot county funds since the auditors will be shown the project undertaken by the cement company.

Joho’s regime did the same in 2015 when Mombasa Cement provided garbage collection trucks for free but the it was still billed to the county government, forcing the cement maker to take his trucks back.

County governments have learnt the art of colluding with county health facilities to loot in pretense that they are not reading from the same script but looting from the same coffers.

The deal to loot through an oxygen project is a pure cookery between the hospital’s top management and the rogue officials at the county’s helm.


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