Senators baffled by Waititu’s budget for South Sudan peace initiative
The county had allocated Sh973 million for coordination of State House functions and actually went ahead to spend Sh902 million in the year under review, Sh58 million was spent on “South Sudan peace process” and another Sh804 million for free primary education even though it is a function of the national government.
Governor Waititu was Thursday cornered by the Senate to explain how his administration allocated over Ksh.1 billion to State House functions, benefits for retired presidents, Free Primary Education and South Sudan peace program; yet they are functions of the national government.
Waititu was appearing before the Senate’s Public Accounts and Investments committee to address queries raised by the Auditor General on his county’s expenditures in the 2017/2018 financial year.
According to the Auditor General’s report, Kiambu County allocated Ksh.973 million to Co-ordination of State House functions, Ksh.180 million to Administration of Statutory benefits for the retired Presidents and Ksh.591 million on State corporations advisory service.
In addition, the Kiambu County Government had allocated Ksh.58 million to Kenya-South Sudan advisory services and Ksh.804 million on Free Primary Education.
In his defense, Waititu insinuated that the report might have been interfered with to embarrass him.
“I want to believe that this report was not interfered with by anybody to put in those things so that when I come here I will be cornered the way you’re cornering me,” said Waititu.
“Honestly, I want to believe the committee will be neutral and look at the issues as they are and I am apologising that we have such issues in the report but I don’t how they came to my report.”
The Auditor General, who was present, confirmed to the committee that the financial statement containing the controversial expenditures had been submitted to his office by the county.
“Chair, the financial statement attached to the report was submitted by the county government of Kiambu,” said the auditor general.
In response to the auditor general’s confirmation, Waititu said: “Then I want to tell and assure this committee that no money was spent whatsoever on South Sudan, on State House because we have no vote for that.”
This prompted the Moses Kajwang-led committee to order for a fresh audit on all Kiambu county government accounts including the Governor’s ‘Kaa Sober’ program.
State House Chief of Staff Nzioka Waita has since dissociated the Presidency’s budget with the one of Kiambu.
“Just for the record State House does not share any budgets with the County Government of Kiambu,” tweeted Waita.