Close

GRAFT

Senate wants to block cash for wasteful counties

A schedule has been sent out summoning governors who have audit queries

In Summary

• Kajwang said the county bosses need to give an explanation.  

• He said the committee is considering passing a resolution to stop funding counties that misuse cash to protect public funds.

Senator Moses Kajwang.
Senator Moses Kajwang.
Image: JACK OWUOR

The senate plans to summon governors of counties involved in wastage of public funds.

County Public Accounts and Investment Committee chairman Moses Kajwang said the county bosses need to give an explanation.  

He spoke during the fourth annual legislative Summit in Kisumu on Tuesday.

 

He said the committee is considering passing a resolution to stop funding counties that misuse cash to protect public funds.

“We have already sent out a schedule for governors whose counties have audit queries to appear before us,” Kajwang said.

The forum deliberated on assessing the existing financial oversight processes at the national and county government levels. 

Kajwang said they would start with counties mentioned adversely in the Auditor General Edward Ouko's report.

He said if a county has had disclaimer and adverse opinion for the last five years, there is no reason why public funds should continue to be disbursed to such a county.

Kajwang said such counties should receive funds only after they put in place a recovery plan, measures and systems to ensure public funds would be used  prudently.

“This is something I'm promising the public that the Senate is going to implement in this financial year,” Kajwang said.

 
 

Kajwang questioned how Makueni and Laikipia counties got unqualified opinion in the Auditor General's report yet the situation on the ground is wanting.

The Homa Bay Senator said some accounting officers have mastered the art of respond accurately to  audit questions yet public funds continue to be mismanaged.

“There were few counties with disclaimer opinion, the questions is, are this counties run better? Are we saying that because Makueni has an unqualified opinion, there is no poverty and thefts or there’s no inefficiency?” he asked.

Kajwang said the Senate will focus on its oversight role to ensure funds disbursed to the counties are prudently used for the intended purposes.

He challenged MCAs to effectively carry out their oversight role to prevent wastage of public resources in the counties.

Several counties are on the spot mismanagement of funds according to the latest audit report. For instance, Kisumu spent Sh3.3 billion on salaries as per Ouko’s report.

The expenditure is 42 per cent of the total county revenue for the financial year ending June 30, 2018.  The amount is more than the recommended maximum of 35 per cent, Ouko says in his report for financial year 2017-18.

Edited by Pamela Wanambisi