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Pressure on Vihiga County over pending bills

By Eric Lungai | February 6th 2020

The county government of Vihiga faces a financial crisis after the National Treasury declined to release funds over pending bills over Sh1.8 billion.

Already, a notice issued by acting county secretary Philip Gavuna on February 5, has warned all staff that salaries for January will delay ‘due to circumstances beyond the county’s control’.

But officers in the administration have revealed to The Standard the delay is due to National Treasury’s firm directive that pending bills be paid, which the county has declined to adhere to, without giving any reason.

“Your contribution to the people of Vihiga County on service delivery is highly appreciated and you are requested to uphold this commitment as we wait for the processing of the salaries,” the notice reads.

Cabinet Secretary for National Treasury and Planning Ukur Yatani in December issued a directive that will halt disbursement of funds to county governments until pending bills are cleared.

In a move to ensure accountability, county governments will be required to provide monthly status reports that will include itemized lists of all the bills paid.

“Because the National Treasury has consistently released the full allocations of the equitable share of revenue due to county government since the role out of the devolved system of government, there is no reason for non-payment of eligible pending bills,” he said.

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