Malava constituency misused CDF, NTA maintains.
Written by John Kabaka
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The National Tax payers Association - NTA has stood by its report that Malava constituency in Kakamega County is among the several constituencies in the country where there was gross misuse and wastage of tax payers’ money on implementing projects.
NTA has put the funds wasted at Kshs 51,777,277.10 of which the area member of parliament who also doubles to be the housing minister Soita Shitanda has disputed and termed it as political witch hunting.
Reacting to the minister’s comments in one of the local dailies, NTA Western Regional coordinator Ms Evelyne Khamala said NTA does not indulge in witch- hunting of mps, but acted as a watch dog on the use of taxpayers’ money to ensure they get value for the money they pay to the government as taxes.
Ms Khamala said in the case of Malava, the CDF management committee inflated the cost of two projects from the original cost by more than 50 percent, an issue the organization found as gross misuse of public funds.
She cited Malava CDF office whose original estimate rose from Kshs 6,750,000 to kshs 17,666,000 and Malava sub district office which was originally estimated at Kshs 6,930,000 but later rose to 17,500,000.
In its report for public information, NTA noted that although good quality material was used and good workmanship shown on finishes, there was wastage of taxpayers’ money due to over expenditure making this badly implemented projects.
Other projects that caught NTA’s criticism were Kimangeti youth polytechnic where quality of roofing sheets was inferior and Tande secondary school where Kshs 8,872,986 spent on the project was above the estimated cost of Kshs 6,480,000.
“There is over expenditure and yet the project is not complete despite having begun six years ago,” said NTA report.
Ms Khamala said, before the report for Malava constituency was released, she took its draft to the minister in his office for comment of which the minister concurred on the organization’s findings that there was over expenditure and misuse of taxpayers’ money in his constituency by the CDF management committee.
“I was surprised the minister disowned his comments and was lambasting NTA for dong a shoddy job and engaging in political witch-hunting”, Ms. Khamala said.
Asked whether NTA was cowed by furious comments Mps have made on its reports on CDF, Ms. Khamala said her organization will continue doing its job as it is tasked for without fear favor to ensure public funds are properly used to give taxpayers value for their money.
She said NTA is set to go to Ikolomani constituency soon, where area mp, Dr. Bonny Khalwale was among Mps who criticized the organization for poor job and political witch-hunting.
In Butere constituency, which the area Mp and Minister for planning, Mr. Wycliffe Oparanya is to rule on NTA report, Ms. Khamala said the CDF funds have relatively been properly used except for a few cases.
Ms. Khamala however hailed the Mp for Kanduyi, Mr. Alfred Khangati, who after seeing the NTA report embarked on training CDF management committee for better use of public funds and hoped other Mps in the area will emulate the example.