Controller of Budget urges Kisii leaders to clear all pending bills

Governor Simba Arati. [Sammy Omingo, Standard]

The office of the controller of budget has urged the Kisii county leadership to take charge of the pending bills and ensure genuine ones are paid within the remaining period of the financial year.

In a report, Controller of Budget Margaret Nyakang’o said the county should address the delays in implementing development projects.

According to the report, there was low absorption of development funds as indicated by the expenditure of Sh85.54 million in the first quarter of the financial year 2022/23 from the annual development budget allocation of Sh3.66 billion.

The development expenditure represents 2.3 per cent of the annual development budget.

The pending bills amounted to Sh1.33 billion as of September 30, 2022, despite the availability of cash in the County Revenue Fund, which stood at Sh831.15 million at the end of the first quarter of the financial year 2022/23.

Analysis of expenditure by economic classification indicates that the Kisii county executive spent Sh1.11 billion on employee compensation, Sh144.38 million on operations and maintenance, and Sh85.54 million on development activities.

Similarly, the county assembly spent Sh73.48 million on employee compensation, Sh15.84 million on operations and maintenance and had no expenditure on development projects.

Regulation 25 (1) (b) of the Public Finance Management (county governments) Regulations, 2015, sets a limit on the county government’s expenditure on wages and benefits at 35 per cent of the county’s total revenue.

Expenditure on compensation to employees of Sh1.18 billion was 39.7 per cent of the proportional annual revenue of Sh2.99 billion and included Sh559.33 million attributable to the health sector, which translated to 47.3 per cent of the total wage bill in the reporting period.

Personnel emoluments amounting to Sh1.18 billion were processed through the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Database (IPPD) system.

The county assembly spent Sh162,000 on committee sitting allowances for the 70 MCAs and the Speaker against the annual budget allocation of Sh92.42 million, which was 0.2 per cent of the total wage bill for the Assembly. 

Last week, the county government started paying some pending bills as well as some contractors who are undertaking mega projects.

The Gusii Contractors Association Peter Momanyi called on Governor Simba Arati to pay the pending bills to allow for the completion of key projects.

“Some of the projects were approved for payment. We are requesting the governor to make the payments. Some of us are going deep into debt,” he said.

The Standard
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