Business Owners’ Response To Governor Mutula Kilonzo’s Failures

By The Weekly Vision Reporter

Governor Mutula Kilonzo Jr. of Makueni is facing huge challenges in trying to deliver on his campaign promises after failing to settle pending bills. Businesspeople who offered various services to the county during the tenure of the governor’s predecessor are complaining of being ignored.

There are also complaints over the criteria the governor and his people have applied to settle recent pending bills, yet some of the pending bills dating back to 2018 remain unsettled. According to available information, at the beginning of FY 2022/23, the county reported a stock of pending bills amounting to Ksh. 657.76 million, comprising Ksh. 299.79 million for recurrent expenditure and Ksh. 357.97 million for development activities.

However, Governor Mutula’s administration has paid pending bills amounting to Ksh. 506.39 million, consisting of Ksh. 252.68 million for recurrent expenditure and Ksh. 253.7 million for development programs. Further, as of June 30, 2023, the outstanding amount in pending bills was Ksh. 42.08 million.

It has also been discovered that the County Assembly spent Ksh. 39.09 million on committee sitting allowances for the 48 MCAs and the Speaker against the annual budget allocation of Ksh. 36.55 million. The average monthly sitting allowance was Ksh. 66,478 per MCA. The County Assembly has established 22 committees.

It has further been discovered that in the financial year 2022-2023, expenditure on domestic travel amounted to Ksh.164.52 million, comprising Ksh.73.52 million spent by the County Assembly and Ksh.9O.80 million by the Courtly Executive.

Expenditure on foreign travel amounted to Ksh. 10.66 million, comprising Ksh. 5.30 million by the County Assembly and Ksh. 5.36 million by the County Executive. Between January 29 and February 4, 2023, 17 County Assembly members flew to Arusha for benchmarking and spent Ksh. 4,230,724.

Between June 17th and June 25th, two officers from the governor’s office travelled to attend the Special Olympics World Cup in Berlin, Germany, and spent Ksh. 1,872,745. Between March 19th and March 26th, seven officers from the Department of Agriculture spent Ksh. 1 million travelling to India to seek partnerships on irrigation. On the same date, another officer from the governor’s office travelled to India and spent Ksh. 726,257 for benchmarking on drip irrigation.

It is important to note that the maximum number of delegates, inclusive of staff, as per the existing international and foreign travel policy should not exceed 7. It is also imperative to note that 2 out of 16 trips delegates surpassed the limit.