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MPs raise red flag over loss of billions from NSSF

10 April 2015, 09:23 Samuel Kisika

Nairobi – The National Assembly’s Public Investment committee (PIC) raised has raised a red flag over reports that KES 130 billion has been set aside from the pensioners’ fund to develop the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) plot along Kenyatta Avenue in Nairobi among other mega-projects.

The PIC has expressed concern that NSSF currently has been operating under improperly constituted board and management structure, and that no one would be held accountable on the Fund’s expenditure.   

Management woes facing NSSF is due to the suspension of its substantive Managing Trustee, Richard Lang’at who was also named in the ‘Anti-corruption list of shame’ the President presented to Parliament.

PIC members who had summoned the Labor Principal Secretary, Alinoor Ismail to respond to their questions, cited COTU Secretary General Francis Atwoli’s initial questions on manner in which investment dealings were done at NSSF. Atwoli had claimed that NSSF was given a clean bill despite not accounting for over KES 100 billion for the last 30 years.

The committee chaired by Eldas MP, Aden Keynan sought to know how NSSF which had issues in balancing books of account was “questionably” cleared by the office of the Auditor General.

Keynan claimed that Labor ministry deliberately violated a court order “as a choreographed scheme to create loopholes to siphon the workers’ funds.”

“The confusion is a fertile ground by cartels to cripple the fund. NSSF is a cash cow for the political class and the corrupt individuals,” said Keynan.

Acting Labour Cabinet Secretary, Raychelle Omamo and Ismail had a hard time responding to questions raised by MPs and why the suspended Labor CS, Kazungu Kambi together with officials in his ministry were constantly interfering with the operations of the NSSF instead of playing an oversight role.

The MPs at some point proposed the PS declared a hostile witness for “deliberately” failing to respond to their questions on why the ministry has failed to implement a court order reinstating the suspended board members.

Read Also: EACC Chiefs divided over names in list of shame

Labor ministry is also on spot for failing to follow the NSSF Act and failure to follow the president’s directive to have boards of suspended CEOs appoint acting personalities.

“NSSF fund is supposed to be independent from the ministry but it appears that the ministry runs the affairs of the fund,” said Keynan.

Nominated MP, Oburu Odinga said Labor ministry’s continued interferences with affairs of the NSSF had made it difficult to discharge its duties.

Oburu said Labor CS has no role in the management of NSSF and maintained that the pensioners’ entity should operate independently, and free from the ministry’s interference.

Kambi stepped aside as Labor CS after being mentioned in the Anti-Corruption dossier for mismanagement and misappropriation of the NSSF funds.

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