Detectives have launched investigations into alleged misappropriation of Sh600 million by Siaya County government.
The probe sanctioned by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) headquarters saw the interrogation of junior and senior staff, some who were suspended by Governor Cornell Rasanga.
The officers from the devolved unit were interrogated at the Kisumu County DCI offices for three days this week. They were put to task to account for the missing funds that had crippled operations at the devolved unit.
DCI chief investigation officer Mike King’oo, while confirming that his officers had pitched camp in Kisumu from Tuesday to Thursday, did not divulge more information
“The officers are traveling back to Nairobi today (Friday) and I have not been briefed yet,” he told Nation on phone.
But Nation.Africa has established that up to 64 members of county staff were summoned over their involvement in the alleged fraud as it emerged that some individual bank accounts were used to transact the millions of shillings according to preliminary investigations.
“They started with the junior staff before concluding with top officials at the Finance department,” said a source who was privy to the investigations.
“The officers presented files of vouchers and receipts of various transactions to defend themselves against alleged dubious transactions,” he said.
The probe was concluded by the interrogation of top three officials who reportedly bore the highest responsibility in the loss that has seen most operations of the county being crippled.
Among those questioned on Thursday included Chief Finance Officer Dennis Nyonje, Michael Ogolla (Finance Director) and Dennis Simiyu who was a cashier in the department who are all under suspension.
Also summoned was a proprietor of a hotel and an aspirant for a political seat in Kisumu after some payments to the hotel were flagged.
The Sh600 million scandal was brought to the fore in August this year when a Member of the County Assembly admitted to receiving Sh150,000 to conceal corruption issues in the county.
According to West Asembo MCA Ambrose Akuno, Siaya MCAs were given between Sh150,000 to 290,000 by the governor’s office to cover up the misappropriation of funds.
Mr Akuno, however, said his colleagues handed over the money to him by a section of his colleagues when they visited him at the hospital.
“I thought that the money was a contribution to support my medication but later realised it was a trick to silence me since I have been the most vocal on corruption matters within the county,” .
The Siaya MCAs were allegedly bribed after they refused to pass the county’s Appropriation Bill for the year ending 2020/2021 after it emerged that there was no explanation as to why bursaries had not been released, Project Management Committee monies not paid and statutory deductions not remitted.