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Treasury given 14 days to block funds for Kisumu, Kiambu and Bomet

POLITICS
By ROSELYNE OBALA | October 3rd 2014

NAIROBI, KENYA: A Senate committee has given the National Treasury 14 days to take action on three counties, whose governors have refused to account for their expenditures.

Thursday, the ministry’s Principal Secretary Kamau Thugge, who represented the Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich before the Senate Public Accounts and Investment Committee found himself on the receiving end over failure to implement the Senate’s resolution to deny the four counties funds.

Committee Chairman Senator Boni Khalwale (Kakamega), senators Kimani Wamatangi (Kiambu), George Khaniri (Vihiga), Muruiki Karue (Nyandarua), Amos Wako (Busia) John Lonyangapuo (West Pokot), Okongo Mongare (Nyamira) and Martha Wangari (nominated) expressed their disappointment at the casual manner that the ministry handled the matter.

“We give the ministry a 14-day notice to implement the Senate resolution to block the disbursement and release of funds to Kisumu, Kiambu and Bomet counties. They should then report back on the same to the Senate to seek concurrence from the two Houses as required by law,” directed Dr Khalwale.

 EXPUNGE MURANG’A

The senators took issue with Mr Thugge’s argument that it is at the discretion of the CS to independently determine the threshold to effect stoppage of funds since the issue of funds for the counties is a serious matter.

“The issue of stoppage of funds is very serious and the CS must become aware of the financial problems in the counties as stipulated in Section 93 of the Public Financial Management Act, 2012,” argued Thugge.

He further stated that the CS can only implement the stoppage once he determines the reason for breach, and demanded that the Senate furnishes the ministry with sufficient documents.

However, the senators regretted to note that the CS has not handled the matter with the seriousness it deserves, taking into account that the audit queries are on the usage of public funds.

Khalwale also said the Senate will write to Treasury and Controller of Budget to expunge Muranga County from the list after Governor Mwangi Wa Iria appeared before the committee and responded to the audit queries.

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