By Luke Anami
Intrigues and bribery attempts marred the writing of a report on National Hospital Insurance Fund by a Parliamentary Committee on Health in Naivasha, The Standard On Sunday can authoritatively report.
Attempts by a section of committee members that the report calls for the scrapping of the scheme altogether were evident during the drafting of the report. There were allegations that an MP who is not a member of the Health Committee was sent to scuttle the process.
The MP from Central Province, PNU wing of Government who was present during the writing of the report further added a new twist to the NHIF saga. He alleged that he had strict instructions to ensure the report dealt a blow to the NHIF Civil Servants Medical Scheme on claims that the scheme was abused by NHIF.
The MP is believed to have been fronting for private sector insurance players who have vowed to scuttle the NHIF scheme.
The report that was meant to be tabled before Parliament last week has now been shelved till next week. The Standard has reliably learnt that some members protested to the Speaker that they wanted time to authenticate the report. “We are aware that sections of the private sector through certain committee members have personal interest in this matter.
That is why we would like to have more time to go through the report as we fear its contents could be manipulated and altered,” said a member of the committee who did not want his name disclosed.
In a nutshell, a section of the committee members feared the report would be doctored to suit those opposed to the rolling out of the civil servants scheme in favour of the status quo that would favour the private sector.
However, in its final report, the committee recommends that the scheme, though faced by a number of challenges, be allowed to continue.
The MPs have recommended that an Inter-ministerial Committee be constituted to advice parties on the smooth aspects of the scheme especially the capacity and its geographical spread, which they pointed out needs to be relooked into afresh.
Members should also be accorded more time to indicate a facility of their choice. However, sections of the report appear unclear and contradictory.