Delays to pay contractors, termination of contracts and the ensuing Court awards will see the Ministry of Health pay a massive Kshs.34 billion in a case going back to 1992.
A report by the Health Principal Secretary Susan Mochache tabled before the National Assembly committee said that the amount is owed to three contractors following irregular termination of contracts and delayed payment for services offered.
There are fears that this amount could escalate further as the PS explained that, despite the ministry’s willingness to settle the bills, budgetary constraints had delayed the settlement of the debt.
The audit queries arose from audit report for Financial Year 2019/20. The Attorney General advised that there are limited judicial options for the resolution of the matter and further delay in setting the matter would result in interest accrual and expose the government to greater loss of public funds, hence the Ministry is not appealing the awards.
The Members of Parliament raised concern over how this came about, saying that the government taxes not should be for contributing to development not to pay court awards that don’t contribute to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).