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Economy

Ouko report says Sh2.7 billion IDPs cash was paid to ghost recipients

Auditor-General Edward Ouko
Auditor-General Edward Ouko. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The government irregularly paid Sh2.7 billion to fictitious integrated internally displaced persons (IDPs), an audit has shown.

Auditor-General Edward Ouko has in a report unearthed numerous anomalies in the payment of the cash meant for people who were displaced by the 2007 General Election violence.

Mr Ouko says money was paid to non-existent IDPs, people who had duplicate names and others who did not have identity cards.

The displaced families were forced from their homes during the violence that followed the December 2007 presidential election pitting former president Mwai Kibaki against former prime minister Raila Odinga.

An estimated 1,220 Kenyans were killed and more than 660,000 displaced when violence flared up between supporters of the rival presidential contenders after Mr Kibaki was declared winner.

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"Examination of sampled list of IDPs national identity cards (IDs) numbers revealed that payments… were made to IDPs whose national identity card numbers provided did not exist in the database of the National Registration Bureau.

"The Validity and propriety of payments… could not therefore be confirmed," Mr Ouko says in his latest audit report of the financial statements of the National Humanitarian Fund.

He said the National Humanitarian Fund made payments worth millions of shillings to IDPs with duplicate names out 16 counties whose records were submitted for audit.

He said for every duplicate name, only one name matched with the identification card number provided while the other similar name whose identification card number provided was related to a different person as verified in the National Registration Bureau database.

Turkana County

Mr Ouko said the validity and propriety of the payments could not be confirmed. He accused the fund of making payments worth millions to IDPs without national identity cards in Turkana County.

"As a result, it was not possible to confirm whether the IDPs paid were Kenyan citizens or the validity and propriety of the payments," he says in the report tabled in Parliament by Leader of majority Aden Duale.

Mr Ouko cited the Fund for failing to provide crucial documents for audit review.

He said despite requesting for documents and records pertaining to the National Humanitarian Fund, the management failed to provide for audit review IDPs’ status report as required under section 13(g) of the Prevention, Protection and Assistance to Internally Displaced Persons and Affected Communities Act.

"No justification has been provided for the failure or inability to provide the status report to the Auditor-General," Mr Ouko says.

The Act requires the National Consultative Co-ordination Committee on Internally Displaced Persons to prepare an annual report relating to the fulfillment of its functions for tabling before Parliament on the situation of internally displaced persons.

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