What you need to know:
- In Nairobi County, the statement of income and expenditure shows that Sh232,676,772 was spent on local travel and Sh55,561,463 on foreign travel without supporting payment vouchers.
The Auditor General's report on County Assemblies for the year 2021/2022 has revealed millions of shillings that some counties cannot account for how it was spent.
According to the report, local and foreign travel has emerged as a cash cow for county assembly members and county staff.
In Nairobi County, the statement of income and expenditure shows that Sh232,676,772 was spent on local travel and Sh55,561,463 on foreign travel without supporting payment vouchers.
According to Auditor General Nancy Gathungu, the Nairobi County Assembly claimed to have spent Sh68,960,112 on legal, arbitration and compensation fees during the year under review, but failed to produce payment vouchers amounting to Sh28,138,268 to support the expenditure during the audit.
"However, payment vouchers amounting to Sh28,138,268 in support of the expenditure were not made available for audit. Similarly, payments totalling Sh40,821,844 in respect of interim and final fee vouchers for various lawyers were not supported," the report said.
The county is also on the spot for corruption after the report revealed that Sh22,484,184 could not be accounted for during the year under review.
"The management procured various conference facilities and air tickets through tenders totalling Sh5,345,750 and Sh914,880 respectively. However, only one bidder responded to each tender instead of at least three as required by law," Gathungu said in the report.
Overpayments of allowances to MCAs totalling Sh7,455,800 were also irregularly paid on the basis of wrong job classifications. The auditor said the job description was listed as job group P instead of group N in a scheme to siphon off taxpayers' money.
The county has also been accused of making irregular payments to the Society of Clerks at the Table, where Sh1.5 million was paid but there was no evidence that the item of expenditure was included in the approved budget as required by Regulations 26(4), 31(e)(ii) and 36(4) of the Public Finance Management (County Governments) Regulations, 2015.
The Auditor General has also questioned how the Assembly claimed to have transferred Sh66 million from the Nairobi City County Assembly Car and Mortgage Account, an amount that differs from the transfers of Sh32.88 million and another Sh24.5 million, totalling Sh57.4 million as reflected in the bank statements, resulting in an unexplained and unreconciled variance of Sh9,012,881.
"Furthermore, the transfer of Sh24,514,966 shown to fund salaries could not be traced to the corresponding salaries account. Under the circumstances, the propriety of the amount transferred of Sh66,416,507 could not be confirmed".
According to the Integrated Financial Management Information Systems (IFMIS), 560 payment transactions totalling Sh120,880,494 were voided during the year under review without supporting documents to show authorisation and reasons for voiding the transactions.
The revelation comes amid calls by the national government for austerity measures to reduce unnecessary loss of public funds.
During the year, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) urged county officials to desist from misappropriating public funds through fictitious imprest accounts and other malpractices.