Northern Kenya

Isiolo flagged for operating 13 accounts outside Central Bank

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Regulations require that county government bank accounts be opened and maintained at the Central Bank of Kenya, except for imprest accounts for petty cash and revenue collection accounts.

Isiolo County has, for the second time under the leadership of Governor Abdi Ibrahim Guyo, been flagged by Controller of Budget Margaret Nyakang'o for using commercial bank accounts for its operations contrary to the law.

Surprisingly, the county operated six commercial bank accounts between July and December last year and seven more by March this year according to CoB's budget implementation report for the first six and nine months of the financial year 2023/24.

Regulations 82 (1) (b) of the Public Finance Management (County Government) Regulations 2015 require that county government bank accounts be opened and maintained at the Central Bank of Kenya, except for imprest accounts for petty cash and revenue collection accounts.

The County Treasury was asked to come up with measures to improve the absorption of the annual development budget after the recent report for the nine months of the financial year 2023/24 revealed a 32.6 per cent rate, which was a 17.7 per cent decrease from the previous year.

"The county incurred Sh565.80 million on development programmes (during the nine months) compared to a similar period in the previous year which was Sh687.23 million," the CoB said in the report.

With an approved supplementary budget of Sh5.75 billion, out of which Sh1.74 billion went to development and Sh4.01 billion to recurrent expenditure, the CoB approved withdrawals of Sh2.87 billion from the County Revenue Account between July last year and March this year.

Of the amount withdrawn, 20 per cent went to development and the rest to recurrent expenditure, with Sh1.34 billion of the amount going to employee compensation and Sh950.79 million to operations and maintenance expenditure.

The devolved government was also put on notice over the late submission of financial documents to facilitate the preparation of the budget implementation reports. The county shared the reports on April 19 this year.

Nyakang'o also directed Governor Guyo's administration to address the high level of pending bills which stood at Sh431.54 million by March 31, 2024.

Some Sh43.85 million worth of pending bills had been settled by last December.

"...ensure the genuine pending bills are promptly paid and timely preparation and submission of financial reports," Nyakang'o directed.

The county raised Sh237.64 million in its revenue, inclusive of the facility improvement fund, a 99 per cent increase from the previous year's collection of Sh119.42 million.

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