Governors must run professional audit

Thursday, September 8th, 2022 08:00 | By
Johnson Sakaja takes the oath of office as new Nairobi Governor at KICC last Thursday. PD/William oeri
Johnson Sakaja takes the oath of office as new Nairobi Governor at KICC last Thursday. PD/William oeri

It has been encouraging to see almost all governors hit the ground running after their swearing-in.

 The mantra seems to be the same: That of moving to weed out ghost workers, engagement of experts to undertake forensic audit of county accounts and expenditure and promises to streamline health services.

 It is apparent that the leaders are not only excited with their new jobs, but also keen to ensure accountability and improve service delivery.

They have been citing reports by Controller of Budget and Auditor General indicting previous administrations on the use of both allocated and self-generated resources.

The zeal with which the governors have assumed office cannot be taken for granted given the fact that since the onset of devolution, counties have unfortunately been turned into dens of corruption by those in power, their friends and kin.

Cases abound where governors have used their positions to hire relatives, award contracts to their mistresses and divert resources to develop either their personal property or fiefdoms.

Greedy, tribalism, favouritism and nepotism have been the ugly measure of one’s success in most counties. All said and done, as enshrined in the Constitution, everything must be done within the law, with checks and balances.

Those currently occupying the offices are obviously out to prove one or two points: That either the previous administration was engulfed in corruption or was simply malfunctioning.

One governor, in his quest to determine why the county had 256 drivers against 82 vehicles, went to the extent of parading each driver besides the vehicle they had been assigned in his bid to weed out ghost workers in the transport sector.

Some other governors are apparently scrutinising all pending bills and incomplete projects initiated by their predecessors.

Whereas all these actions may be taken as well- meaning and aimed at enhancing transparency and accountability, there are fears that they could be turned into a witch-hunt and platform to settle scores. Governors must, therefore undertake the exercise professionally and with extra caution in a manner that will prevent victimisation of professionals in the sub-nationals for political reasons.

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