Nandi Finance CEC grilled over grounded ambulances

Members of an ad-hoc committee put Nandi Finance Executive Alfred Lagat to task over procurement of 10 second-hand ambulances worth Sh48 million.

Mr Lagat was yesterday at pains to explain to the five-member committee why 10 county ambulances have been grounded one year after they were bought.

The ambulances are grounded at the Kapsabet County Hospital after they developed a mechanical breakdown just months after they were acquired.

It has also emerged that the ambulances did not have registration numbers.

“The problem is not normal registration of the number plate; the issue is the interchange of the chassis numbers that are being undertaken by the ministry and the manufacturer,” explained Lagat.

Committee chairman Emmanuel Rono demanded that Lagat submit the ambulances’ procurement and mechanical records to establish the legality of the procurement process.

Other members of the committee were Fred Kipkemboi, Pius Murei, Magdalene Rono and Joshua Ng’etich.

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At the same time, Lagat was put to task over the implementation of the Sh13 million bursary kitty in the 2017/18 financial year, which was allegedly channelled into operational expenditure.

He was also questioned over two borehole drilling machines that the county acquired at Sh60 million in 2018/19 financial year. The machines are grounded at the county headquarters.

Lagat told the committee the procurement committee had discovered that the drilling machines lacked key components, including compressors and other spare parts, forcing the department to make further purchases.

The CEC was also questioned over failure to implement motions by the county assembly on fleet management and decentralisation passed in February last year.

Late remittances

He also admitted that the county has been struggling to settle accrued penalties due to late remittance to the National Hospital Insurance Fund and the National Social Security Fund amounting to Sh70 million.

“NSSF alone slapped the county with a fine of Sh30 million due to delayed remittances for seven years,” stated Mr Rono.

Lagat explained that due to the perennial delay by the National Treasury to release funds, NSSF and NHIF had slapped the county with penalties for late remittances.

The committee will table its report within 10 days to determine Lagat's fate.

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Nandi Finance ExecutiveAlfred LagatKapsabet County HospitalAmbulances