Contractors in Vihiga to be paid on merit

Payment of debts by Vihiga County government to contractors will be guided by the law and meritocracy.

Speaking during the Vihiga Court Users Committee (CUC) training at a Kisumu hotel, Vihiga Deputy Governor (DG) Dr. Patrick Saisi declared that the government will only pay contractors who have the required paper work.

Saisi said the list of those to be paid will be compiled with a consideration of the recommendations of the Auditor General, bank statements and files of each and every contractor, Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS) and county assembly inspection reports.

From Auditor General’s report it was captured that Vihiga County owes contractors close to Sh2.4 billion.

However, from our analysis the County owes contractors Sh800 million. If we follow merit, the County is only going to pay Sh300 million, he said.

He revealed that from the available records, there are some contractors who genuinely supplied goods or services but there is no inspection report.

In other cases, Saisi said the process for supply of the services and goods were not advertised as required by the law.

He urged those who may be aggrieved after the payments to seek legal intervention as he called for inclusion of arbitration in contracts.

Meanwhile, DG urged the County Assembly of Vihiga to expedite in clearing of the pending bills which he said will ensure that services are delivered to the public accordingly.

The governor has given me the responsibility of ensuring that any pending bills in the assembly are passed. It is on this note I call upon the County Assembly to speed up the process of clearing out any bills to ensure that our people get the required services, he said.

Kisumu Resident Judge Fred Ochieng who was present during the training said only tenders that meet the required constitutional threshold stand a chance of payment.

Judge Ochieng warned that it was illegal for a parastatal, government agency or department to authorize payment of a contract, where procurement procedures were not adhered to.

Payment of contracted services and goods by a government agency, parastatal or department where tendering has not been done is illegal. In such case, the accounting officer is usually held responsible, said Justice Ochieng.

Source: Kenya News Agency