According to a group of Congressmen, Obama may have decided to ignore federal law in the final hours of his term while making an illegal arms deal with his fathers native Kenya. The Congressmen say that they will press for a congressional investigation into the awarding of a $418 million U.S. weapons sale to Kenya that was approved while hundreds of thousands were waiting for Mr. Trump to be sworn in on the National Mall.
Sources say the deal would allow Kenya to buy 14 fully armed crop-duster-like planes, including two trainer aircraft and services, to be used for missions against the terrorist group Al-Shabaab.
But, the lawmakers, led by Rep. Ted Budd (R-NC), are concerned as to the reason the contract was awarded to major defense firm L3 Technologies. That company has never produced the model in question. But the real question is why they were awarded the contract, when another smaller company located in North Carolina currently produces that model. In addition that company is owned by a disabled veteran and sells the planes at a lower cost.
The company, IOMAX USA Inc., costed out 14 planes at $237 million dollars, according to a Rep. Budd aide, about half of the contract price.
If you think it looks like a political payoff, Rep. Budd said:
“It looks like politics.” “Why are they sending it to someone that’s produced zero, for twice the price? This is inappropriate.”
Amazingly, the Republicans will be joined in the request by Georgia Democrat Sanford Bishop who says he is also puzzled by the agreement. The bi-partisan letter is being sent to the Kenyan ambassador to the U.S. on Tuesday. A copy of that letter has been obtained by Breitbart News.
It says in part:
“We believe Kenya would benefit by exploring its options in regard to this acquisition. We ask that the Government of Kenya take these facts, in particular the prospect of an ongoing congressional investigation of this sale, under consideration as it decides whether or not to proceed with this arms purchase.”
One question that is bothering the congressmen is just how the New York-based L3 received a “sole-source” primary contract, meaning there is only one known source for the equipment requested, or only one single supplier that can fulfill the requirements. Something that is simply not true.
Normally after price and other details are worked out, the Pentagon would issue a recommendation, and the State Department would approve or disapprove the sale. But in this case lawmakers suspect, the sale was routed through an Air Force acquisition office at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, which steered the contract to L3. The Air Force declined all comment on the subject.
A State Department official has attempted to justify awarding the contract to L3 saying that the Kenyan Ministry of Defense “conducted extensive market research.” But the lawmakers question that story. The aide said Kenya initially requested MOOG, an ordnance company, to produce the planes, but according to an Air Force response to congressional inquiries.
That request somehow got “clarified” to L3, who will modify the requested Air Tractor planes into weaponized versions. “We believe that the Air Force likely did something that had MOOG get replaced with L3,” the aide said. Even the aide admitted that story doesn’t make sense, especially since IOMAX first began producing the weaponized planes in 2009 and has dropped more than 2,000 bombs on Al-Shabaab already.
Standby for more to come on this story.