Kenya Bureau of Standard’s 12-member board, commonly known as the National Standard Council (NSC), and seven senior managers left the country last Friday on a 12-day trip that will take them to Japan, China, India and Dubai.
The team, which is divided into three groups, will visit three countries for 10 days before converging in Dubai on the last two days of the tour.
Kebs has defended the trip, which is expected to cost taxpayers around Sh25 million in air tickets and per diem for the team of 19.
Last month, Kebs Acting Managing Director Bernard Nguyo (pictured) wrote to Pre-Export Verification of Conformity (PVoC) agents informing them of the tour.
“Three teams composed of the National Standard Council (NSC), which is the Kebs board are scheduled to visit various PVoC import inspection centres in China, Japan, India and Dubai in March 2019. The members wish to be taken through inspection processes you have put in place to assure the quality of goods destined for Kenyan market,” wrote Mr Nguyo in the circular dated February 12.
Yesterday, Nguyo defended the tour, saying it was justified after queries on its benefits, considering that the board members are non-executives.
“The board members of Kebs play a vital role in oversight and also policy direction. This trip, therefore, is perfectly in order as members of NSC are acquitting themselves in the processes put in place to tame illicit and counterfeit goods entering the country,” he said.
Nguyo, however, refused to divulge information on the money allocated for ticketing and per diem, saying it had already been factored in and approved in the budget.