Finance Department has been diverting funds meant for development, says Saoyo

Ultimately, said Saoyo, the buck stops at the governor’s desk. “He is the one who has employed these people. Why is he keeping quiet when the county is degenerating into a mess?”

By Jonathan Teikan

Funds from the National Government to Kajiado County are regularly diverted to unplanned projects, leaving genuine suppliers, contractors and employees perpetually broke culminating in stalled development projects strewn across the county.

Kajiado Star can now reveal that this sad state of affairs is enabled by disunity at the County Assembly, whereby MCAs are unable to play their oversight role and hold the Executive to account.

The revelations came out in an exclusive interview with Saoyo Kusero, the Keekonyokie MCA, who also doubles up as the Health Committee chairman.

In view of the above, Saoyo said that MCAs have vowed to set aside their differences for the sake of offering effective service delivery to the people of Kajiado.

“It is for that reason that we have vowed not to approve the Budget until all pending bills, including payment for contractors, some of whom have not been paid as far back as 2016, is effected,” explained Saoyo.

“We want all contractors paid so that development work can proceed.”

Among the pending bills include sh51.8 million owed to Kemsa, sh16.4 million owed to Meds and sh32 million yet to be paid for ICU equipment.

So, how is it that the County Government of Kajiado owes so much money for services already delivered? Saoyo believes that this can only be attributed to ineptitude at the Finance Department.

“Ordinarily, the County Treasury requisitions funds from the National Government, using relevant receipts and invoices through an elaborately drawn Cash Plan,” he explained. “However, when the funds are released, Finance Department officials divert the funds to other uses other than the ones they had indicated the monies would be used for. That is why I said that the Kajiado County Government has its priorities upside down.”

These issues came to the fore after casuals at the Kajiado Referral Hospital went on strike, demanding to be paid their dues stretching five months. Following the Budget Committee’s intervention, which saw the hospital workers get paid, other departments also reached out to the MCAs, hoping to be similarly assisted.

“It turns out that even the Finance Department has casuals who have gone unpaid for quite some time. We want all these workers paid their dues,” said Saoyo.

Saoyo now says that members of his committee will be retreating to Mombasa, where they will compile their recommendations and resolutions to be tabled on the floor of the House.

“If our resolutions recommend Motions of Censure to individuals found culpable, so be it. This time round we must seek justice for the people of Kajiado,” added Saoyo.

Ultimately, said Saoyo, the buck stops at the governor’s desk. “He is the one who has employed these people. Why is he keeping quiet when the county is degenerating into a mess? As the Assembly, we shall write to him, enumerating our recommendations and what we want done with immediate effect,” the Keekonyokie MCA explained.

He cautioned that their resolutions, once tabled on the floor of the House, are binding and that they come with consequences. “A resolution of the County Assembly is equivalent to a resolution of the High Court and must be adhered to,” he said.

While Saoyo’s involvement in this issue has not come as a surprise to many, the people are slowly coming to terms with the sudden about-turn by Assembly Majority Leader Moipai, who has been a staunch Lenku supporter, who wouldn’t have been caught dead going against the wishes of the governor.

“Kajiado County assembly is now united and that explains why Moipai has taken that position,” said Saoyo. “For the first time since we were elected, the Assembly has come into an agreement of working together.

We have all of us decided to rally behind our majority leader and we have resolved not to politicise these issues.”

He added that they reached an agreement that No MCA will be a sycophant of the Executive. “We shall all stand by the truth. As MCAs we have fought enough battles, while the people of Kajiado continue to suffer. We resolved to set aside our differences,” said Saoyo.

“Neither should our action be seen to be undermining Lenku. This is purely service delivery to the people of Kajiado. When the governor does well, we will congratulate him and when he is in the wrong, we shall say it.”

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