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Gachagua sought Sh100 million to pay Nairobi Rivers Commission


Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua addressed the regional meeting for intelligence security chiefs at the Sarova Whitesands Resort in Mombasa County on Sunday, January 28 2024. [DPSC, Standard]

 Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua requested Sh100 million from the State Department of Devolution to fund the operations of the Nairobi Rivers Commission.

The request by Gachagua is contained in a report by Auditor General Nancy Gathungu.

 “The State Department for Devolution received an Authority to Incur Expenditure (AIE) of Sh100,000,000 from the Office of the Deputy President on May 31, 2023, for the operations of the Nairobi Rivers Commission,” reads the report. 

Gathungu observed that the commissioners received full salaries for seven months, totaling Sh18 million.

 She pointed out that President William Ruto did not specify in the December 2022 gazette notice that appointed the commission whether they were full-time employees or not.

 “Further, the legislative mandate for full-time appointment of the Commissioners was not provided for audit review and its absence renders the salary amount drawn for full-time engagement irregular and recoverable,” Gathungu says.

She adds that the Sh18 million expenditure was irregular and that the management in the Devolution docket violated the gazette notice by paying out the money. 

The Nairobi River's Commission was appointed to lead the clean-up exercise in the river.

it is chaired by Dr. Pamela Olet, with representatives from different sectors such as Dr. Mumo Musuva (Nairobi City County), Grace Senewa Mesopirr (Ministry of Environment and Forestry) and Eva Muhia (Riverine Communities). 

Other members are Elizabeth Wathuti (Civil Society), Carlota Dal Lago (Private Sector), Professor Elijah Biama, and Dr Duncan Ojwang (both from Academia). 

Former Kiambu governor Ferdinand Waititu, who had been appointed to the commission, was prevented from taking office after the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) and Transparency International Kenya obtained court orders barring him. 

The orders were issued by High Court judge Hedwig Ong’udi on February 10, 2023.

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