Kakamega MCA wants money allocated for stalled health projects released and the projects completed to enhance health care.
Responding to complaints from a community group over stalled dispensaries in his ward, Mahiakhalo MCA David Shikhala said the stalled health projects had been factored in the new financial year's budget, but the funds had not been released.
"Some of the projects were started long before the onset of devolution and were not completed due to lack of funds," said Mr Shikhala.
He said most dispensaries were non-operational due to lack of funds and poor leadership in the past; they have not been equipped with medical and non-medical. The county has set aside Sh15.8 million for dispensaries this financial year.
Munzakula Stakeholders Forum, a community group in Mahiakhalo, last week confronted the county government for failing to complete health projects started in the county.
In a letter dated July 3 and seen by the Standard, the group asked the county government to delve into issues surrounding a major health project in the ward that has remained moribund for over a decade.
- 1 Class Three girl reportedly defiled by her teacher dies
- 2 Mozzart donates equipment worth Sh 3 million to Kakamega County general hospital
- 3 Protective equipment to assist learners fight Covid-19
- 4 Kakamega County takes first bold step to bring essential services to villages
Munzakula Dispensary was started in 2006 and since then, only one building without equipment and staff had been erected.
The group's secretary general, Patterson Igata, said their efforts to get the dispensary operational have been futile, citing frustration from the former managements before the onset of devolution.
Agnes Neli who resides close to the dispensary said a white lorry from Kenya Medical Suppliers Authority (Kemsa) had stopped by three months ago to deliver drugs to the dispensary, but it drove back after discovering the dispensary was not operating.
"They asked me whether they could deliver drugs, but I had to confirm with the village elder first – he had the key. He told me he would not release the building's key when there were no workers," explained Ms Neli.
Mr Shikhala told the Standard that the dispensary had not been opened, but an officer at Kemsa who sought anonymity said according to their records, the dispensary was operational.
"Drugs allocated for such dispensaries are repackaged and distributed to other operating dispensaries and health units," said the officer.
The community group want investigations done and legal actions taken against those who swindled dormant dispensaries' allocations.
"We want to know where our dispensary equipment are and where Kemsa has been taking the drugs allocated our dispensary since the time they were notified the construction was complete," said the group's vision bearer, Felix Kevere.
The over a hundred-member group have threatened to stage demonstrations in town this week over the issue if their demands are not addressed.
The standard also established that another bunch of six county dispensaries were lying dormant since they were started.
The six include, Shiyanzu Dispensary in Lurambi, Emaira Dispensary in Bukura, Ivochio Dispensary in Lubao, Shivakala Dispensary in Shamoni, and Mwikalikha Dispensary in Khwisero and Butere Iranda Health Clinic in Lunza.
In most of cases, buildings had been erected but no equipment and staff had been brought. Most dispensaries also lie in deplorable conditions without adequate equipment, drugs and staff.
The county's Health Executive Rachael Okumu declined to comment on the issue.