BY NAMULONGO PETER,NAIROBI,28TH AUG 2018– The Auditor General is set to investigate loopholes within the procurement department of the Nairobi county assembly following revelations that the Nairobi County Assembly has a Sh7million debt with the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).This is after Speaker Beatrice Elachi said she has written a letter to the Auditor general in that respect.
Addressing the press on Tuesday morning Elachi said ,the debt was as a result of the non-remittance of withholding tax by the County Assembly from suppliers.
“I am a bit sad that I owe government money. I do not know why we owe KRA Sh7.3 million withholding tax which is very unfortunate,” she said at her office.
She explained that the Auditor General will assess the situation before giving recommendations which will be followed.
“The Auditor General will come in to help us and give us as a risk assessment report that if you follow what he is telling you together with the internal auditor, you will find that you will have clean reports in handling most of the things that we have,” she said.
This comes just a day after the County Assembly Clerk Jacob Ngwele and five others pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiracy to defraud the county of Sh997,000.
“Now for us to owe government money – Sh7 million – and now they will penalise us, is not fair for a government institution, it is not fair when the government is looking for taxes, especially when we are the County Assembly,” she said.
At the same time, while stating that the County Assembly will abide by the court’s decision including barring the officials from office, she stated that normal operations in their various departments will continue uninterrupted.
“The assembly will continue because this is a government institution. Today Elachi is here, tomorrow I move. Whoever comes in should seamlessly take over an institution and work,” she indicated.
“We have officers who have been working in the offices that have been closed down, so they will not close, they have been doing their work and they will continue. We will ensure that salaries are paid on time.”
The six are accused of fraudulently making the payment to Primara Ventures for books not delivered to the County Assembly Resource Centre. The have since been released on a Ksh 300,000 bail by the court.