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MPs query National Bank snub of Auditor-General

Wilfred Musau
NBK chief executive Wilfred Musau. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The National Assembly wants the management of National Bank of Kenya (NBK) #ticker:NBK to explain why the lender has failed to submit itself for statutory audit by the Office of the Auditor-General in what MPs fear could be a move to conceal malpractices.

The lender’s books are currently audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). Other State-controlled firms have their accounts scrutinised by the Auditor-General directly or by private accounting firms contracted by the government agency.

A letter from the Office of the Clerk to the National Assembly addressed to the bank’s chief executive Wilfred Musau wants an explanation why the bank has declined numerous audit requests from Auditor- General Edward Ouko.

This comes as the House Committee on Finance and National Planning commences investigations into the planned NBK’s Sh6.1 billion all-stock buyout by KCB Group.

In its 19th report of audited accounts of state corporations, the Public Investments Committee (PIC) observed that NBK was not being audited by the office of Auditor-General.

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“This is despite the government of Kenya and the NSSF having joint shareholding in the bank of more than 50 percent. The committee has since learnt that efforts by the Auditor-General to audit NBK has been futile,” the letter signed by Senior Deputy Clerk Jeremiah Ndombi, reads in part.

The letter is copied to Mr Ouko, National Treasury Principal Secretary Kamau Thuge and Acting Inspector General- Inspectorate of State Corporations Titus Muriithi.

Consequently, the Office of the Clerk has directed that the NBK management appears before PIC, chaired by Mvita MP Abdulswamad Sharif without fail to state its reasons.

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