Executive and assembly headed for a clash over procurement

Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong during the issuance of cheques to needy but bright students at the Agricultural Training Centre on January 18, 2019. [Ignatius Odanga, Standard]

The county government has seconded procurement staff to its 10 departments, a move that is likely to cause friction between the executive and members of the county assembly (MCAs).

In June, an ad hoc committee that was constituted by ward representatives to investigate why development projects factored in the 2017-18 and 2018-19 budgets were not implemented recommended delegation of procurement functions to county government departments.

The seven-member team was chaired by Bukhayo North/Walatsi MCA Gardy Jakaa.

However, Governor Sospeter Ojaamong’s administration has redeployed staff who worked in  procurement at the county headquarters to the departments.

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Procurement is one of the six directorates under the Department of Finance, Information and Communication Technology and Economic Planning. 

The Standard has established that there is a stalemate in the implementation committee that was to write a report based on findings of the ad hoc committee.

“The ad hoc committee report did not recommend that staff be deployed to the department but all procurement functions be done at the department level,” an implementation committee member told The Standard.

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“What we are witnessing is a well-calculated rush by the executive to second somebody in departments to hoodwink implementation committee members that procurement functions have been decentralised entirely as per the ad hoc committee report and we know the plan,” the MCA maintained.

Deputy Governor Moses Mulomi confirmed that deployment of the staff was the first step towards "decentralisation" of the procurement services.

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“We are only acting on the recommendations of the members of the county assembly who asked us to decentralise procurement functions to departments,” said Mr Mulomi.

The DG said there will be need to employ many staff with view of ensuring that the aim of decentralisation is achieved.

During the grilling of members of executive and their chief officers on why there was slow implementation of the development projects, Jakaa's team discovered that Ojaamong’s cabinet "went to sleep" after the 2018-19 budget was passed waiting for a Supplementary Budget.

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MCAsBusia CountyCounty Assembly