The newly-elected Governor has vowed to clean up the county, although some are questioning his methods. [Photo/ Jambo News]
The newly-elected Governor has vowed to clean up the county, although some are questioning his methods. [Photo/ Jambo News]

Kisii Governor Simba Arati is causing a stir with his aggressive campaign to address issues including insurance fráud and ghost workers at the county government.

The newly-elected Governor, who took over from James Ongwae, has vowed to clean up the county, although some are questioning his methods. He promised that heads would roll after establishing that the county had over 250 drivers on its payroll despite only having 82 vehicles.

It also emerged that while the county has been officially procuring comprehensive covers for its vehicles, many of the cars upon inspection were found to have third-party covers. A comprehensive car insurance is more expensive than a third-party policy because a comprehensive policy premium covers both third-party liabilities and own damages.

In a public address on Wednesday, August 31, he promised to address the matter and summoned all drivers and county vehicles to a local stadium for a verification exercise  which took place a day later.

Some have even dubbed it the ‘Magufulication’ of Kisii – referencing the late Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli who was famous for demanding answers from public officials and calling them out in public.

The EACC has since waded into the matter, stating that it will investigate Kisii county government officers over the reports. It further stated that the issues were not unique to the county.

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“EACC has taken note of the serious allegátions of ghost workers and fráud in the procurement of motor vehicle insurance in Kisii County and will inquire into the same in accordance with its mandate,” the commission’s Head of Corporate Affairs and Communication, Eric Ngumbi, stated.

“EACC has acted on such matters in other county governments and more are under active investigations. Where applicable, EACC interventions include recovery of the e*******d public funds from the culpable officials,” the body added.

As reports by the Auditor-General have revealed, wastage of public funds and resources in county governments can be rife.

The latest report, tabled in Parliament in July, disclosed that billions of taxpayer cash had been lost as county governments diverted funds meant for service delivery, failed to bank locally collected revenue and made irregular payments to contractors and staff.

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