About Sh3.5 million of the Sh13.6 million raised to help victims of the Londiani accident paid for hospital bills, even after the Kericho County Government pledged to waive the same.
Minutes of the Londiani Disaster meeting held on July 18 at the governor’s boardroom, revealed the committee chaired by Kericho County Secretary Wesley Bor approved the expenditure of the money on hospital bills, printing, lunch, refreshments, transport, security and tents.
The committee was made up of 11 members, with the majority from the Kericho County Government.
A breakdown of the Sh13,682,662 raised reveals Kericho County Hospital received Sh2,037,524, while Londiani Hospital got Sh1,534,190, raising questions why the payment was made despite a promise by the county government that it was going to waive the hospital and mortuary fee for the victims.
The pastors’ facilitation fee amounted to Sh100,000, and the transport refund for 12 ward administrators and two sub-county administrators for seven days amounted to Sh98,000.
Supertix Limited, which provided tents used in Londiani was paid Sh2,945,000 and Supershine Limited paid for the tents used at Rays Hotel Sh411,000.
Rays Hotel, where lunch for 100 was provided, got Sh100,000. Transport, refreshments, and printing costs amounted to Sh423,000 while fuel and meal allowances for County Commissioner’s team amounted to Sh300,000.
The committee spent Sh32,000 on field preparation, grass cutting, and garbage collection.
The Ministry of Interior and National Administration presented a Sh300,000 budget to the county secretary as a budget spent during the June 30 accident.
The ministry in the letter signed by Stephen Orinde for county commissioner and dated July 18 indicated that fuel cost was Sh150,000, security meetings Sh60,000, lunches and refreshments Sh60,000 and airtime Sh300,000.
Dr Bor approved the payment and directed it be paid to County Commander Geoffrey Maiyek.
Survivors got Sh720,000 according to a document signed by the expenditure committee and signed by Bor and Sh4,770,000 was spent on fatalities. Three owners of damaged motorbikes got Sh300,000.
Families of those who lost their lives in the tragic accident, got Sh90,000 each while 12 survivors got Sh60,000 each.
As per the document signed by Bor Sh112,946 was indicated as balance.
Jane Sang, whose relative survived the accident, said she was shocked to hear payment was made. She said they were not considered and have been raising funds to cater for the medical bills of their kin.
Kericho Deputy Governor Fred Kirui has since questioned the expenditure.
“Families who lost their loved ones during the accident were to receive Sh300,000 while survivors were to receive Sh215,000 each, and the Governor had earlier announced that his administration would waive medical and mortuary fees,” Kirui said.
Kirui called on the County boss to shed light on the expenditure, which he termed a scam of the highest order.
Kericho County Health Executive Brenda Bill Bii stated that the funds raised for the victims of the tragic Londiani road crash were not misappropriated.
“It’s very easy for someone to claim that money was misappropriated. No coin has been extended outside expenses surrounding the Londiani road crash incident,” she said.
Bii highlighted that some of the victims who suffered severe injuries, including fractures, are still receiving specialised medical treatment at Kericho County Hospital.
However, she pointed out that certain necessary equipment for their treatment is not available in the county and must be procured from a vendor.
“It’s not possible for a hundred percent waiver. Part of the money was set aside for the treatment of the patients still admitted at the hospital. They require highly specialized treatment. We don’t even know how much the hospital bill will eventually amount to,” said Bii.
Despite this, Bii confirmed that Governor Erick Mutai’s administration waived the doctors, mortuary, and post-mortem fees for the 52 victims of the accident, as declared during the prayer service.
Regarding the use of funds, Bii explained that a portion was utilized to procure medical and non-pharmaceutical items for Londiani Sub-County Hospital, where most of the road crash victims were rushed after the accident. “We had to replace the items the facility had procured through the Facility Improvement Fund. We also had to clear a huge electricity bill for the mobile mortuary facility,” she said.
John Mark, the Supertix Director, said to have pocketed Sh2.9 million for providing a tent during the prayer service attended by Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua, defended the amount.
“What I provided is a dome with a seating capacity of 7,000 people, a holding room for the president, and a banquet. We also provided a Public Address System, display screens, and other amenities befitting a presidential function,” he said.
Mark said he required over 50 casual labourers to quickly put everything together for the event.