Turkana County faces probe over unlawful procurement
24 September 2015, 10:33
Nairobi – A Senate committee has directed the anti-corruption agencies to probe unlawful procurements worth KES 51 million by Turkana County after officials admitted that they flouted the laws.
The Senate’s Public Accounts committee chaired by Boni Khalwale (Kakamega) directed the CID and EACC to launch investigations into Turkana Governor, Josephat Nanok government’s irregular purchase of tippers, tractors and animal feeds through single-sourcing tender.
The Auditor General’s report had pointed out that two 20-tonne tippers worth KES 18 million, four tractors worth KES 26 million and animal feeds worth KES 7 million were procured unlawfully and demanded responsible officers to be prosecuted for contravening the procurement regulations.
Although Nanok argued that they resorted to single-sourcing procurement of the equipment as a matter of urgency, such as using tippers to transport relief food because no commercial vehicle operators accepted to do so due to insecurity in the area amid starvation and animal feeds due to much drought that endangered lives of livestock, the committee ignored forcing him to admit the irregularity.
Read Also: Nyeri Govt denies buying bed for KES 1.3 million
“We admit to not following the due process of procurement by not conducting an open tender and we regret for failing to write to the Public Procurement Oversight Authority for advice,” said Nanok.
The Turkana County Finance Chief Executive, Etwom Nabuin who had accompanied Nanok was put to task by the senators to explain why the tendering committee was not put in place and flouted the procurement laws in purchasing the equipment.
Nabuin failed to convince senators as to why the County ignored the lawful open tender and embarked on single-sourcing process despite telling the committee that since the County flouted the procurement laws, he could not break the law further by manufacturing documents to justify his actions.
Khalwale warned that such practices have been contributing to massive corruption in counties where prices of facilities and equipment have been inflated through direct purchase to benefit a few individuals.
“This committee does not direct for the prosecution but I direct that the Governor and responsible County officials be investigated for the purchase of tippers costing KES 18 million where 50% was paid as deposit, the purchase of tractors worth KES 26.7 million and animal feeds costing KES 7 million,” said Khalwale.
However, Nanok said he cannot be subjected to investigation on grounds that he did not participate in the tendering process after giving total powers to County officers responsible for procurements, and demanded that they be held accountable.
For the latest on national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page!
Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.