MP warns of ghost groups targeting NGAAF money

Susan Ngugi

Tharaka Nithi Woman Representative Susan Ngugi.

Photo credit: File I Nation Media Group

Tharaka Nithi Woman Rep Susan Ngugi has warned fraudsters who want to benefit from National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF) money by registering ghost groups and submitting proposals.

Speaking in Chuka town on Sunday while handing out cheques to women's groups in Karingani Ward, Ms Ngugi said the fraudsters "get national identity cards from places and then register the groups as officials".

"I am aware that there are ghost groups applying for NGAAF funds, but I will ensure due diligence before disbursing the money, including conducting a headcount," Ms Ngugi said.

She noted that she will be handing out cheques to the groups and that all members must be present to ensure that the groups exist.

70 per cent

The legislator said the groups must also meet NGAAF's policy requirements, including having a membership of 70 per cent of the target group.

She noted that there are some groups claiming to be women's groups but the leaders are men, while others claim to be youth groups and the officials are old people, which is against the requirement.

"The women's group must be 70 per cent women and all the officials must be women as well as those for the youth and people with disabilities," she said.

She said the NGAAF fund is for value addition and is given to existing groups that are engaged in an income generating project and the money should be used strictly for the project written in the proposal.

The women's representative said her predecessor, Beatrice Nkatha, ran into trouble with the Auditor General, Nancy Gathungu, after some groups decided to use the money for projects that were not included in the proposal, which led to audit queries.


She said one group was given Sh165,000 to buy an incubator but members diverted the money and bought a motorbike for Sh106,000 and shared Sh59,000, according to the auditor general.

Another group received Sh189,000 and shared Sh10,000 among 16 members while the rest was used for table banking against the proposal.

Ms Ngugi advised that groups that are struggling to identify viable projects can seek assistance from the NGAAF office or even the gender office.

She gave the Bidii Women Group Sh118,000 to buy a milk vending machine and the Bidii Yetu Women Group Sh120,000 to buy a posho mill.

The lawmaker said she has started giving money to groups that qualified for funding last term but did not get it, and a total of 23 groups will receive money in the first disbursement.