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Kisumu county ‘paid Sh3.5m to audit firm to help recover Sh3m’

Kisumu county government entered into a contract to pay Sh3.5 million, to an audit firm to help recover Sh3 million that had allegedly been stolen from the county.

The damning revelations came to the fore on Thursday when Governor Jack Ranguma appeared before the Senate county public accounts and investment committee, in Nairobi to respond to audit queries.

Senators questioned the rationale of such a decision, given that it was not even clear that the money would be recovered.

The lawmakers asked why the county bosses opted for an audit firm Deloitte instead of dealing with the police.

But the governor blamed the national government for failure of counties to deposit county funds in an authorised revenue account.

DEVOLUTION

Mr Ranguma said this prompted them to spend money that had not been banked in County Revenue Fund (CRF), as required by law.

“I agree we spend money at source in violation of the law because in the initial period of devolution, money was released late to counties. Because we are a city, it was critical we spent this money to deal with specific issues,” Mr Ranguma said.

The Governor blamed the national government of denying counties funds generated from devolved functions, like health and agriculture. The law requires that county funds must be deposited at the CRF.

Senator Kimani Wamatangi sought to know why the funds were not deposited in CRF, yet the account was in existence during the 2013/14 financial year.