22 Mombasa MCAs record statements with EACC over Dasani
‘We know that given the realities of the political space, this is likely to be a year when people disappear with entire budgets of departments if we do not interrogate’
Senators have said the Auditor General’s failure to submit reports on time could lead to completing their term without fully querying governors’ spending.
They want Edward Ouko to explain why he has only received the 2013-14 audit reports for the counties since devolution began, yet there are only eight months to the next polls.
Senators last week accused Ouko of impeding the Senate’s oversight role by delaying the submission of reports. They made the accusation when presenting a motion extending the House calendar by a week before going on recess.
Majority leader Kithure Kindiki absolved the Public Accounts and Investments Committee of blame for ensuring governors account for spending, and said Ouko is the “problem”.
Council of Governors chairman Peter Munya last Friday gave journalists a report showing how the counties have spent Sh1.3 trillion received since devolution. Munya presented the report at Parliament Buildings after being queried on his county’s (Meru) spending by the Public Accounts Committee, chaired by Kisumu Senator Anyang’ Nyong’o.
“As much as we are putting pressure on the accounts committee to deliver the reports for subsequent years, it is a pity the Auditor General has not submitted those reports. The Auditor General is in violation of the Constitution, which forms grounds for removal from office as a public officer,” Kindiki said.
Ouko, however, cited inadequate staff to audit both national and county government spending as the cause of delays.
“I see a situation where this term may end when we have not even finished considering reports of a single year. That will be tragic. As Parliament, we must put pressure on the Auditor General to give us the reports,” Kindiki said.
Senator Nyong’o accused Ouko of overlooking the constitutional timelines of presenting the reports. He asked the House leadership to step in and make Ouko submit the 201415 report.
Kericho Senator Aaron Cheruyoit warned that billions of shillings could be lost if the reports are not given on time.
“We know that given the realities of the political space in our country, this is likely to be the year when people are likely to disappear even with entire budgets of departments if we do not have time to interrogate and question the decisions being made,” he said.