Former Devolution Cabinet secretary and current Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru could soon find herself on the spot after her name was once again mentioned in the Sh9 billion National Youth Service (NYS) scandal.
At the same time, Public Service and Youth Affairs Principal Secretary Lillian Mbogo-Omollo denied claims of loss of funds at the institution.
Waiguru’s name as well as that of former Permanent Secretary Peter Mangiti and former NYS director general Nelson Githinji were mentioned in the alleged scandal after it emerged that most transactions happened during their tenure.
There was unexplainable expenditure amounting to Sh17.5 billion during the 2014/15 financial year. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chaired by Opiyo Wandayi investigating the NYS saga heard that the alleged losses were a result of various transactions during the tenure of the three.
Appearing before the committee Friday, Omollo claimed most transactions that they are currently being accused of having authorised were inherited from the previous regime. She attributed her current woes to her resolve to clean up NYS as some suppliers who have been barred from supplying goods and services were fighting back.
Previously, she said NYS spent Sh1 billion to purchase milk powder, fuel Sh1.9 billion, meat and bones Sh1.1 billion, uniforms Sh2.43 billion for the recruits annually. She said she took over NYS with more than 5,000 pending bill claims from several suppliers valued at Sh10 billion some of which dated back to 2013/14 financial year when NYS was part of the Devolution ministry.
She said that since she took over, she has so far appeared before PAC 14 times, other departmental committees 63 times, Directorate of Criminal Investigations 12 times and Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission 62 times to shed light on issues, which occurred before her tenure.
She said: “What we inherited together with the DG in December 2016 is absolute confusion in all matters relating to procurement.”
While telling those responsible to take individual responsibility, she further explained that in fact, she refused to authorise payments for about 1,600 claims, saying they did not have supporting documents, such as minutes, while others were not signed.
She explained that under the current NYS accounting system, it is very easy to know which officer is responsible for which function as everything is detailed is in the Information Financial Management Information System (IFMIS).
She said so far, Sh6.2 billion has been spent on goods and services for the Financial Year 2016/17 including all pending bills inherited since 2013. Sh2.8 billion has been spent in the current financial year and thus there was no such loss of Sh9 billion.
She said: “I do not think it is possible for that kind of money to be lost from such an institution. For me, it is even mind-boggling. A loss of Sh9 billion would mean that NYS is technically and operationally closed for the two financial years 2016/17 and 2017/18.”
Accompanied by her planning counterpart Julius Muia and immediate former NYS Director-General Richard Ndubai, Omollo said it was impossible for the institution to have lost such money, yet the auditor General Edward Ouko in his 2016/17 report gave NYS expenditure a clean bill of health.
Omollo said that it would constitute a serious anomaly if the Auditor General did not notice any alleged loss of money at the NYS yet he had all the time to scrutinise and go through all the vouchers and receipts in their custody.