Committee on Health summons KEMSA board over COVID-19 funds

The Parliamentary Committee on Health will start interrogating members of Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA) Board on how allocated funds were used in efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19.

The committee’s chairperson Sabina Chege has said from the Ministry of Health records, KEMSA was allocated Ksh 2.5 billion to procure cheap Personal Protection Equipment (PPEs) to medical facilities across the country.

She noted that the committee has invited the KEMSA board to establish if the allocated funds were used prudently.

Speaking in Murang’a Tuesday, Chege stressed that those found to have misappropriated any funds meant to contain the spread of coronavirus will personally be held liable.

She moved to assure Kenyans that the truth on corruption allegations in Kemsa will ultimately be known. “The relevant government agencies are doing investigations to find out if money donated to combat spread of COVID-19 were misappropriated.

“Yesterday we had the Health CS who informed members of the Senate committee that only Ksh 23 billion was allocated to his Ministry,” said Chege.

The Murang’a woman representative further said they will also commence investigations on part of the funds which were given to committees to help fight the spread of the virus.

“Ksh 584 million was shared among committees based on health index and also the devolved units have been receiving money from donors. The health committee will get the records from the ministry of health indicating what every county gets so that we can embark on investigations,” she added.

The Women Representative was speaking at Kiwanduma area where she was accompanied by Mathioya MP Peter Kimari to launch construction of a bridge connecting Kangema and Mathioya Sub counties.

She added that the COVID-19 centres such as the Kenyatta National Hospital, Kenyatta University hospital and Moi Teaching and Referral hospital among others will be audited.

Meanwhile, Chege has urged the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) to crack down sub-standard PPEs in that market saying such equipment may pose danger to unsuspecting users.

She noted that some serious allegations have been raised on the quality of some of the masks and sanitizers being sold to Kenyans which may be of poor quality.

“Let’s KEBS among other government agencies move with speed and intensify the crackdown on all PPEs being sold to Kenyans with a view to ensuring that only standard masks and sanitizers are in the market,” she added.

Speaking at the same time, the Mathoiya MP asked the Senate to adopt a third basis revenue sharing formula so as to help counties get their funds.

Kimari said many projects in the counties have stalled due to delayed release of funding, saying the most affected was the health sector, which is a devolved function.

“We pray that the Senate breaks the ongoing stalemate on the division of revenue and come up with a win-win formula acceptable to all the counties,” added Kimari.

  

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