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Waiguru- Crack whip on Treasury officials for bizarre expenditure

NEWS
By Daniel Psirmoi | May 28th 2019
Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru when she appeared before the Senate County Public Accounts and Investment Committee on audit queries at Parliament. [Boniface Okendo/Standard]

Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru now wants action taken against Treasury officials behind the “bizarre” national government expenditures in county budgets.

The Governor yesterday dismissed claims that some counties spent money on State functions, insisting that a section of Treasury officers maliciously came up with an erroneous report in the Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS).

Ms Waiguru, who in the past served as the Director of IFMIS, told members of a Senate watchdog committee the e-procurement system had no problem. She said its operators were the problem.

“A system is as good as the people who developed it and its users. Someone at the national Treasury developed the bizarre expenditure templates,” said Waiguru when she appeared before the County Public Accounts and Investment Committee to respond to audit questions.

Kirinyaga was among 11 counties whose statements for the 2017/18 financial years suggested that they had budgeted funds for functions beyond their purview.

The counties cumulatively ended up with more than Sh10 billion in questionable expenditures.

In the contentious statement, it was claimed Waiguru’s administration had set aside Sh419.98 million for State House affairs, Sh851.75 million for Government clearing services and Sh176.8 million for free primary education.

At the session with members of the committee that is chaired by Senator Moses Kajwang’ (Homa-Bay), Waiguru said problems started when county finance officials logged into the system and found one correct report and the other with errors that are now in public domain.

“It is clear that the IFMIS system was tempered with. Someone must be held responsible for creating the wrong template that brought about the bizarre expenditures. Treasury officials led by the IFMIS director must come clean,” she said.

Stanley Kamanguya, is the acting director of IFMIS.

Other counties that had a problem with their budgets were Kiambu, Kitui, Kakamega, Garissa, Kirinyaga, Kwale, Lamu, Nyamira, and Samburu.

Two weeks ago, Auditor General Edward Ouko absolved the devolved units from blame over the budget lines, terming them a case of bad reporting. Mr Ouko assured that the issue would be sorted out.

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