Determinants of delay and cost overruns in Kenyan`s public sector construction projects: a case of Meru county, Kenya.
Delay and cost overruns in public sectors investments can raise the capital-output ratio in the sector and elsewhere, bringing down the efficacy of investments. Yet there are no estimates of the delays and cost overruns, and of their opportunity cost. The general objective of the study was to establish determinants of delay and cost overruns in public sector construction projects in Kenya with a specific reference to construction projects in Meru County. The study targeted clients, consultants and contractors to provide information with regard to the determinants of delays cost overruns in Kenya‘s public sector construction projects. The research employed descriptive research design and target population consisted of ongoing and completed construction projects in Meru County, Kenya. The respondents constituted the management and other staff representing different positions in the construction firms, regulatory association officials and professionals in the public construction sector who were involved in different stages of the construction projects. The study targeted 39 public sector construction projects. The study adopted Yamane‘s formula to come with 39 construction projects as the sample size. Each of the 39 projects had 3 respondents. Data was collected using selfadministered questionnaires and drop and pick later method was adopted. Entry and analysis of data was done using descriptive analysis with the help of SPSS (Statistical Package for Social Science) version 22 tool for quantitative data and data was presented using tables and percentages. The major research findings revealed that public sector construction projects were frequently faced by delay and cost overruns due to rising contractual issues, changes in project financing, lack of qualified labor and modern equipment in use, changes in project scheduling and irregular changes in project design and documentation. From the findings, it was concluded that project delay and cost overruns can be reduced if their causes are critically examined before commencing on any project. Thus, it was recommended that when sourcing for a contractor to undertake a project, it is of paramount importance to vet them to ensure that they have capacity and are well capable to undertake the project in question, there should be there proper documentation prior to project commencement, during and after project completion is important, and that there should be there a monitoring and evaluation tools and techniques which are employed to ensure projects completion are on course. Proper financing as well as deployment of the right equipment and experience labour is paramount for the success of the projects. Similarly, all the stakeholders must understand the contractual issues which might cause delays and cost overruns during the life of the projects.
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