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Nairobi county tops list of travel expenditure

A report by the Controller of Budget reveals that Nairobi County had the highest expenditure on domestic and foreign travel at Sh286.99 million, followed by Nakuru at Sh197.3 million and Bungoma at Sh188.9 million.

Other high spenders on foreign and local trips include Kilifi (Sh171 million), Kisii (Sh170 million), Migori (Sh157 million), Wajir (Sh149 million), Machakos (Sh148 million), Turkana (Sh141 million), Kakamega (Sh134 million), Kiambu (Sh131 million) and Busia (Sh128 million).

MCAs and members of county executive committees have been criticised for going on non-essential trips, both locally and overseas, purportedly to acquaint themselves with best practices and benchmarking sessions.

Counties that spent relatively modest amounts on local and foreign trips during the period under review include Kwale (Sh12.4 million), Narok (Sh14 million), Mandera (Sh33 million), Embu (Sh39 million), Elgeyo-Marakwet (Sh40 million), Tharaka-Nithi (Sh42 million), Lamu (Sh42 million), Mombasa (Sh46 million), Garissa (Sh46 million) and Nyeri (Sh55 million).

Controller of Budget Agnes Odhiambo warned counties against borrowing funds from commercial banks without seeking the necessary approval.

“During the reporting period, it was noted that some counties borrowed from commercial banks without guarantee from the National Treasury. There were also instances where some counties borrowed without obtaining approval from the County Assembly,” she said.

She also raised concern at the low revenue collection levels in most counties. “We recommend counties develop strategies to enhance local revenue collection,” she said.

Ms Odhiambo added: “To ensure counties achieve their development goals, we recommend they develop and implement robust monitoring and evaluation frameworks.