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Mruttu rejects report ranking county 45 in development

COAST
By Renson Mnyamwezi | July 28th 2016
Taita Taveta Governor John Mruttu

The Taita Taveta County government has dismissed a report ranking it at position 45 in development expenditure.

Governor John Mruttu termed the report by the Controller of Budget and Auditor General as inaccurate and out to demean his administration.

Mr Mruttu said development activities in the last three months of the past financial year had not been captured in the report.

“The absorption rate for development by the end of the last financial year was in excess of 99 per cent,” stated Mr Mruttu.

There were, however, mixed reactions among the residents over the budget spending, with some accusing the county administration of doing little in terms of development implementation.

Budget implementation

Others challenged the county administration to explain why the absorption rate for development in the last financial year was far much below their expectations, compared to other counties at the Coast.

In a report released this week, the controller and auditor general ranked the county number 45 out of 47 in development spending during the nine months of the 2015-2016 financial year.

The report ranked Kwale County as the best in budget implementation, with 57.3 per cent of the budget as development expenditure while Tana River emerged second with 57 per cent. Taita Taveta was ranked second last with 10.2 per cent.

Kilifi County was the best performer in the region and 13 nationally, with a development expenditure of 33.6 per cent.

Yesterday, Mr Mruttu said the development activities carried out in the last three months of the past financial year were not captured in the report.

Speaking at his office, the governor stated that the absorption rate for development by the end of the financial year was in excess of 99 per cent and not 10.2 per cent as reported in the report.

Mr Mruttu, however, noted that during the nine months reviewed by the Controller of Budget, there was a stand-off between the executive and county assembly on the budget, which lasted for six months, which were part on the nine months.

“It should be noted that during the six months of the stalemate, there was consensus between the executive and members of the county assembly to freeze the development budget until an amicable solution was reached on the contentious issues that the county assembly wanted addressed,” said the governor.

“Therefore the 10.2 per cent of development index quoted by the Controller of Budget in the report was reached in three months after the two arms of county government unlocked the stalemate surrounding the development budget,” he added.

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