Nyaribo, Omogeni in a war of words over audit queries

Nyamira Governor Amos Nyaribo. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

Nyamira Governor Amos Nyaribo and Senator Okongo Omogeni are engaged in a war of words over allegations of mismanagement of the county government.

The two have sharply differed following the Senate's recent summons of the county boss.

Senator Omogeni claimed that the county had been run down. “There are no drugs in our hospitals, MCAs should start the impeachment process so that I get a chance to question him at the Senate. We have instances where funds have been embezzled under the watch of the county boss,” he claimed.

Omogeni alleged that some projects have stalled while some contractors are forced to part with money to receive tender documents.

He said the audit report paints a bad picture for Nyamira county. “We have issues that we need to discuss about the management of our county. We can't just sit and watch as some people bring down our good county,” he said.

But Governor Nyaribo hit out at the senator saying: “A single senator has no powers to summon me. It is a collective action by the Senate. I put him on notice for telling lies. I attended Senate as a normal procedure which affects every Governor, we answer to questions raised in audit reports."

“I don’t want to talk much about the senator. He says I am using a big engine vehicle, the car was bought by the late Governor John Nyagarama at a time when he was still a senator and he never questioned the same. I came to the office and decided not to procure another office car,” he added.

Nyaribo argued that the rating of Nyamira among the corrupt counties is not related to the happenings of the county executive.

“The report focused on how our people are ever ready to bribe those in both the county and national governments. We have those individuals bribing officers under national governments to get birth certificates and other clearance documents," he said.

“In the county, they mentioned corruption at the Assembly and the County Public Service Board. We are investigating the allegations of corruption in those entities,” he added.

The governor asked Omogeni to visit development projects in the county and stop spreading rumours.

“The executive doesn’t handle cash when disbursing bursaries, we issue cheques to schools. We prudently spent the Sh69 million we received for Covid-19 mitigation measures. No money was lost, we added Sh41 million from the county government. Part of the money is with the county Treasury.”

Nyaribo defended his county staff over the audit report saying the documents that had not been submitted have since been provided. “Disciplinary measures have been taken against all those officers who were reluctant to provide audit documents,” he said.

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