Corruption

Why EACC Detectives Are Pitching Camp In Wajir

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Meanwhile, Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka has convened a special sitting on Tuesday to hear the motion for Governor Abdi’s impeachment.

A team from the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) is expected in Wajir County starting Monday to investigate the alleged embezzlement of public funds by impeached Governor Mohamed Abdi’s administration.

The team will also probe alleged procurement malpractices in the county. The EACC is interested in the multimillion procurement of infectious disease prevention commodities under tender number WCG/H/DT/002/2019-2020.

In a letter dated April, 28, Mr David Ikimat from the EACC’s northeastern regional offices asked the county executive to provide documents and any other information on the tender.

The commission asked for originals of newspaper advertisements of the tender, the purchase register, opening register, copies of receipts and all bid documents.

Also to be provided are bank statements of the Wajir County government, showing where the money was paid from, all payment vouchers to the contractor, and the approved procurement plan for the 2019/2020 financial year, among other documents.

The commission has listed at least 20 documents that should be provided by the county.

In the letter, Mr Ikimat said EACC officers will collect the needed documents on Wednesday.

Reached by phone, he confirmed sending the letter to the county secretary.

“It is true that we sent a letter to Wajir County requesting some documents after we received a complaint touching on a certain tender,” Mr Ikimat said, but noted that the EACC would give more information on the matter.

Senate sitting

Meanwhile, Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka has convened a special sitting on Tuesday to hear the motion for Governor Abdi’s impeachment.

Instruments of impeachment were handed over to the Senate Speaker last Thursday after 37 MCAs voted against the governor.

Only 10 MCAs opposed the motion that accused the governor of gross misconduct, violation of the Constitution, abuse of office and financial impropriety.

An audit report has since indicated that Governor Abdi’s administration used direct procurement instead of competitive bidding in awarding the questionable contract.

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The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) was not informed of the process.

Appearing before the Senate Health Committee earlier in the year, Governor Abdi said that due to the emergency caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, his administration opted for direct procurement.

He claimed he later reported the process to PPRA as required by the law on procurement.

Audit report

An audit of the management of the Covid-19 emergency fund gave Wajir an adverse report.

The governor reported spending Sh308.8 million on Covid-19 response but a special audit showed the county spent Sh141.5 million, leaving a difference of Sh167.3 million that could not be accounted for.

Further, Wajir reported using Sh36.8 million to pay its frontline workers yet the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) had approved usage of Sh35 million.

The county had an extra expenditure of Sh1.5 million in payments to health workers. 

To worsen a bad situation, Wajir paid 21 medical officers who were on study leave a sum of Sh1.2 million. The said staff were not present to offer support amid the pandemic.

Governor Abdi defended himself, maintaining that his administration recalled health staff who were on leave.

Despite the turbulence he was facing, he reshuffled his Cabinet on Friday, a move some interpreted as avoiding accountability.

The governor moved Mr Ibrahim Abdi Mohamed from the Ministry of Finance and Economics Planning to Education Youth, Gender, Culture and Social Services with immediate effect.

In the changes announced in Gazette notice number 4197, Mr Ismail Sheikh Issack was transferred from the Ministry of Health Services to Finance and Economic Planning.

Also moved was Mr Hussein Sugow Gedi, from the Ministry of Education to Health.


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