The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) has opened a probe into the alleged theft of public funds amounting to over Sh400 million by senior Siaya county government officials.
EACC says county officials withdrew the funds from county coffers in a series of suspicious withdrawals within 12 days after the August 8th general election despite a directive by the new Governor James Orengo stopping procurements, payment of allowances and pending bills.
“The employees went ahead and paid themselves hefty amounts during the transition period,” EACC said in a statement on Friday.
In one instance, an official attached to the Finance Department allegedly received six payments, out of which five were made on August 31st while the sixth was made on September 6th.
The payments included Sh225,000 for travel cost, Sh93,000 (tuition fees allowance), Sh200,000 (accommodation allowance), Sh250,000 for tuition fees and Sh120,000 for advertising awareness and publicity campaign.
“Another senior staff member is alleged to have received three payments including Ksh.200,000 for travel cost, Ksh.425,000 for daily subsistence allowance and Ksh.125,000 for bank service commission charge, respectively,” added EACC.
In a separate case, a support staff officer is said to have received Sh748,000 for purported contracted technical services.
In addition, Sh112 million was allegedly wired from County Executive bank accounts to clerks of various County Assembly committees with three of the clerks receiving up to five payments in one day ranging between Sh650,000 and Sh716, 000 under the imprest account.
“Investigations are ongoing to inform appropriate legal action including criminal prosecution of any culpable persons and recovery of the stolen public funds,” the agency added.