Governors want Senate committee investigated over extortion claims

Friday, September 4th, 2020 00:00 |
Kisii Senator Sam Ongeri. PHOTO/COURTESY

Governors now want investigating agencies to probe the County Public Accounts and Investments Committee (CPAIC) of the Senate over extortion.

Council of Governors (CoG) Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya invited Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) and Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to investigate the motive behind some of the physical summonses governors receive.

Oparanya said governors would not bow to pressure and will appear virtually until the coronavirus pandemic is over and funds have been disbursed to County Governments.

Issue summons

“We note that the Senate Committee on County Public Accounts and Investments has continued to summon Governors to appear physically despite consensus with the Council to convene all meetings virtually,” said Oparanya in a statement yesterday.

Oparanya termed it unfortunate that some of the issues being raised by the Senate Committee emanate from previous financial years dating back to 2015.

The Governors wondered where the Senate has been all along for it to issue summonses like those.

“We categorically state that Governors will not bow to extortionist nature of this County Public Accounts and Investment Senate Committee and will only appear virtually until coronavirus pandemic is over and funds has been disbursed to counties,” Oparanya affirmed.

The resolution was reached  yesterday after governors held an extraordinary CoG virtual meeting, whose agenda was to discuss conduct of Senate Public Accounts Committee in relation to a letter addressed to Murang’a Governor Mwangi Wa Iria.

They were also to discuss the stalemate over the third generation formula and failure to approve County Allocation Revenue Act 2020.

Last week, the committee fined Wa Iria Sh500,000 for disregarding three summonses on audit queries.

County Public Accounts and Investments Committee said in a statement last week that decision was made because they believes the governor is frustrating its work.

The committee accused the Governor of being a no-show yet it has written to him, inviting him to sittings between June and September.

“The committee therefore resolves, that pursuant to section 19 (1) of the Parliamentary Powers and Privileges Act, the Murang’a Governor be fined Sh500,000 for failing to appear after being summoned by the committee,” read the letter by Kisii Senator Sam Ongeri-led committee.

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