Pending bills 'stall projects'

Pending bills 'stall projects'
An Auditor General's report has put the value of pending bills accrued by the county at Sh461 million. The report covers the 2017/18 financial period.

Auditor General Edward Ouko has noted that the pending bills explain why many projects in the county have stalled.

According to Mr Ouko, the previous county administration started projects that were left half-way complete after contractors withdrew when their dues were not paid.

The current administration abandoned these projects when it was sworn in after the August 8, 2017 General Election.

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One such project is the Youth Talent Academy at Thanju Village in Lower Sagana, where Sh400 million was spent.

The project was, however, abandoned halfway and has become a haven for vandals who have stripped it off concrete polls and metals left behind by the contractor.

"The entire structure is slowly getting weakened by harsh weather after vandals descended on it," said Justus Kariithi, a resident.

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Kariti Ward MCA Joel Wagura, in whose ward the academy was supposed to stand, said youth had lost hope of benefiting from it.

In Mutithi Ward in Mwea West sub-county, a number of such projects have stalled, according to area MCA Peter Njomo.

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Mr Njomo listed the projects as Kinyaga Dispensary, which has consumed Sh10 million, Kandongu agricultural staff office block, which ate up Sh22 million, Ng’othi-Kirwara dispensaries, which used Sh2 million and Sh2.5 million respectively.

“When you visit Kinyaga dispensary, you will find some farmers have already taken up its space and planted maize. There is no one to ask them since the county government has left the dispensary to waste away,” Njomo said.

Produce documents

Deputy Governor Peter Ndambiri said most of the contractors could not produce documents used to award the contracts, and that is why they could not be paid.

“When one fails to produce the tender documents for accounting purposes, how does he or she expect to be paid?" asked Mr Ndambiri.

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Ouko's revelations have created confusion on how much the county owes contractors. Finance Executive Moses Migwi last week tabled documents showing the county owed the contractors Sh290 million.

After Ouko's figures came to light, Mr Migwi could not explain the disparity between his figures and those of the Auditor General.

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Auditor GeneralSh461 millionEdward OukoYouth Talent Academy