The Committee on Public Accounts and Investment (PAIC) has started interogating County ministries’ responses to report of the Auditor-General on the Financial Year (FY) 2016/2017.
On Monday, the committee, which is chaired by Hon. Rodgers Nato kicked off interrogation on the Auditor- General report.
According to the report, ownership documents/title deed for the land meant for construction of Governor’s residence in Lugari sub-county were not availed for audit review thus making it difficult to ascertain ownership of the land meant to hold a multimillion project.
The report further questioned on whether public participation was done prior to commencement of the project.
In response , the Deputy County Secretary, Mr. Joshua Kutekha confirmed to the committee that the land in question was a public land owned by was Kenya Forest Services (KFS)and that the County government had made progress in getting the title deed.
Mr. Kutekha affirmed that the National Parliament had already approved for the survey of the land.
An official from the Office of the Auditor-General, Mr. Gilbert Omogi advised that the title deed issue be dealt with speed by the County government to avoid it recurring in subsequent years.
The committee was further informed through documentation that indeed public participation took place in the financial year 2014/2015 and subsequently through the preparations of the County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP) 2013-2017, Annual Development Plan FY 2016/17 and Budget making process of FY 2016/17.
On the construction of the County Headquarters Annex, the report noted some errors that saw the actual cost of the project come to Ksh. 126,557,860 up from Ksh. 125,740,280 awarded to the contractor thus giving a variance of Ksh. 817,580, a variation that was defended to have occured as a result of correction of error in the bid documents and that it could not change the amount indicated in the form of tender and contract agreement.
The County Secretary, Ms. Jacinta Odhiambo confirmed to the committee that the Governor’s residence was complete and awaiting furnishing upon approval of the Supplementary Budget FY 2019/20.
Ms. Odhiambo added that the new County Headquarters offices were ready for use from January, 2020.