State accused of bungling chief auditor’s appointment

Thursday, March 12th, 2020 00:00 |
Head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet Joseph Kinyua. Photo/PD/File

Mercy Mwai @wangumarci

Members of the National Assembly have accused the government of bungling the appointment of a new auditor general to replace Edward Ouko, whose eight-year tenure in office expired seven months ago.

The MPs, who sit in the joint committees of Public Accounts, Public Investments and Special Funds, claimed that the government is looking to get a person who is friendly to the system as opposed to one who will keep them in check.

At a meeting with Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua, the legislators said it is shocking that the selection panel chaired by Sammy Onyango which was to propose names to President Uhuru Kenyatta for formal appointment failed to get any qualified person out of the 17 who had been shortlisted for the position.

MPs Kathuri Murungi (Imenti Central), Chris Wamalwa (Kiminini), Shakir Shabir (Kisumu East), Patrick Makau (Mavoko), Omar Mohammed (Mandera East), and William Chepkut (Ainabkoi), yesterday demanded that the  government comes clean as to why the names were rejected so that a solution can be found.

Ouko was sworn in on September 16, 2011, as Kenya’s first auditor general following creation of the office after the  promulgation of the 2010 Constitution.

Shabir claimed that the situation has been orchestrated by the so-called deep state, which wants to control how the appointment is done.

Wamalwa said that the delay in the appointment of a substantive auditor is an injustice to the counties, whose funds are pegged on the last audited accounts by Parliament.

Kinyua, who said that it is possible for them to pick the second set of the 17 shortlisted after the first test of position one to three failed, proposed a raft of recommendations including amendments to the law to pave way for the appointment.

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