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Auditor General Faults Embu County Govt for Paying Unqualified Staff, MCAs

 The County Government of Embu has been faulted for employing unqualified staff and paying them salaries totalling to KSh 7.5 million in the 2019/2020 Financial Year.

Embu Governor Martin Wambora. His County has been faulted by Auditor General Nancy Gathungu for hiring unqualified staff hence making wananchi not to get value for money paid in employing the said staff. Photo/COURTESY

A report by the Office of the Auditor General states that an examination of personnel records revealed that several members of staff did not possess the job qualifications prescribed in advertisements made by the County Public Service Board.

Further, the report discloses that examination of payment records indicated the unqualified staff were paid salaries and wages totalling Ksh 7,511,771 in the year under review. Auditor General Nancy Gathungu therefore holds that the County Executive contravened Public Service employment regulations and further, value for money may not have been obtained after paying unqualified staff.

The Auditor again fingered the County for overemploying. It is indicated that the statement of receipts and payments reflects total county revenue totalling KSh 5,828,962,441 and compensation of employees’ payments totalling KSh 2,725,295,192, which is 47 per cent of county revenue. This is a contravention of Regulation 25(1)(b) of the Public Finance Management (County Governments) Regulations, 2015 which provides that the costs should not exceed 35 per cent of the County Government's total revenue.

The Governor Martin Wambora-led County Government has also been flagged for unauthorized over-expenditure totalling KSh 59,696,407 was incurred on compensation of employees in the year under review. The Auditor opines that the County Administration breached the law on control of wages and salaries expenditure.

Bloated Wage Bill

In addition, excessive use of budgetary resources in funding a bloated wage bill constrains funding for service delivery and development projects that would benefit the majority of Embu County residents.  

According to the audit report, an examination of the payroll for the month of July 2019 revealed that net salary payments for 27 employees were below the one-third statutory minimum stipulated in Section 19(3) of the Employment Act No.11 of 2007.  The law provides that deductions made by an employer from the wages of an employee at any one time shall not exceed two-thirds of such wages.

Additionally, the Auditor puts the County Executive on the spot for outstanding imprests totalling KSh 19,700,702, which included KSh 3,381,500 paid to an officer in the County. The Officer reportedly used KSh 2,735,600 of the imprest to pay staff and Members of the County Assembly (MCAs) selected to finalize the Assembly’s second Supplementary Budget for the 2018/2019 financial year.

The report states that management did not explain why the costs for facilitating the MCAs and staff of the County Assembly were met by the County Executive whereas the Assembly had been allocated funds in the budget to cater for its expenditures.  Therefore, the expenditure totalling KSh 2,735,600 was irregular and its propriety could not be confirmed.


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