The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has officially summoned 17 top officials of Kisumu County Government over allegations of manipulation of tenders.
County Executive Committee (CEC) for Tourism, Achie Alai, members of the tender and evaluation committees, and the secretarial acceptance and inspection committee members are set to appear before the graft body as from next Monday.
They are to be questioned over impropriety over funds for branding and consultancy services amounting to Sh. 20 million.
In a statement signed by EACC regional manager Mogare Oira dated August 20, 2020, addressed to the County Secretary (CS), Godfrey Kigochi, the Anti-Corruption body had also asked for additional documents not provided to them as had previously been requested.
The CEC for Tourism, Achie Alai is alleged to have influenced a company associated with her to be awarded the consultancy contract of Sh. 20 million.
“To further assist our investigations, kindly facilitate the following staff to appear for an interview and statement recording at our EACC offices,” reads the letter in part.
This development comes in the wake of reports that the said company (OG Plus Company Ltd) had been rejected by an independently appointed committee, according to the documents as well as reports already availed at the EACC regional offices.
The Anti-graft body has separately written to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to not allow the CEC to leave the country as they move to finalize the investigations.
Sources confided that the CEC (Alai), before taking up the appointment at Kisumu County Government lived in the United States of America (USA) and so could easily relocate in the heat of the ongoing investigations.
Kisumu EACC regional manager Mogare Oira confirmed to KNA having written to the County government summoning the staff while demanding additional documents so as to have a tightly woven case as the climax of the investigation.
In 2019, Kisumu residents wanted the EACC to probe the tender for the supply of the iPads to the county assembly in the 2017/18 financial year which they claim was done by the speaker’s wife Carren Oloo, and Kolwa Central MCA George Olwal.
Also on the spotlight is the supply of the tender for furniture to the MCAs offices countywide worth Sh13 million and was sourced from prisons yet payment of Sh22 million was effected against the same.
It also emerged that a company by the name Ritco Tours and Travel was being used for pilferage under the guise of providing travel services where payment of Sh2m from the assembly’s Kenya Commercial Bank account was wired to the tour firm.
Investigations also revealed that the speaker procured rental offices for the assembly staff at the Mega Plaza 10th floor at a monthly rent of Sh800,000 and goodwill of Sh5 million while the offices remained unoccupied yet three months’ rent had been paid. Procurement procedures were not adhered to yet the county has a vacant office at the county headquarters. The speaker went for a fully donor-funded two-week official function in the UK and according to the assembly records he was paid all the allowances from the assembly coffers.