• Contractors said despite a directive by President Uhuru Kenyatta nobody is ready to pay the pending bills. County says it is trying to pay and will do so.
• The contractors stormed the county offices on Monday, just hours after the Finance department went up in flames that destroyed evidence of pending bills from 2013 to date.
On Sunday the Kisumu Finance department went up in flames and on Monday contractors and suppliers stormed county offices and demanded to be paid.
The Kisumu County Contractors have given the county government one week to pay their pending bills, or they will sue.
They said that despite the directive to pay by President Uhuru Kenyatta, nobody is ready to pay the pending bills.
The fire destroyed records of contracts and bills paid and pending from 2013 to date.
The contractors who stormed the county offices hours after the finance department went up in flames said they will be forced to deal with other authorities.
Led by their chairman, Maurice Aloo, they said most of them are not able to provide for their families, pay fees, workers, KRA and cover basic needs.
“We are suffering when it comes to payments yet the works were already done, it is very unfortunate. It's either they act or they don't because at this point we will be forced to engage other authorities,” Aloo told reporters.
Finance office George Okong'o, however, assured the contractors that the county had been "up and down over the payments".
He told the contractors county was going to pay Sh120 million after approval from the Controller of Budget.
“Currently S500 million has been factored into the supplementary budget that will be discussed in the assembly next week to aid in the payment," Okong'o added.
He also told contractors that they had agreed with the Cabinet to cut down some of the development project budgets to ensure that payments are made.
Okong'o told the contractors and suppliers that no pending bill had been paid irregularly.
“If you know anybody who was paid irregularly, just alert me, bring the matter to my attention, because I am not aware and I'm sure there's no such thing," he said.
(Edited by V. Graham)