Huge sums skimmed off seven universities, says Auditor General Report – Weekly Citizen


A number of public universities vice chancellors and former ones face arrest following investigations involving corruption at their respective institutions.
Already, a number of them have been questioned by state organs and recorded statements with others yet to be grilled.
The move to arrest and charge the vice-chancellors comes as the new Education cabinet secretary George Magoha is out full throttle to weed out rampant corruption in public universities.
Among those on the radar are University of Nairobi vice chancellor Peter Mbithi, Maasai Mara University’s Mary Walingo, Egerton University’s Rose Mwonya, Pwani University’s Mohammed Rajab and former Masinde Muliro University vice chancellor Fredrick Otieno.

Prof. Fredrick Otieno

Prof. Rose Mwonya

Auditor General Edward Ouko’s report has always highlighted widespread financial mismanagement.
Ouko has raised many suspicious transactions including missing crucial transaction records, unexplained expenditures, and violation of procurement regulations; un surrendered imprest and abandoned projects.
Universities that have been unable to explain major spending also include Maseno University, Kenyatta University, Kabianga University, University of Eldoret, Multimedia University and Moi University.
Moi University could not explain why it has not recovered the unsurrendered imprest. The university paid Sh4,818,280 to construct the main gate.
At Maseno University, there has been systematic breach of public procurement and disposal regulations, raising questions whether the university obtained value for money in a number of transactions.
For instance, the university spent Sh11,768,240 to buy a 67-seater bus through restricted tendering. Only six suppliers were invited to apply, as opposed a minimum of 10 required by PPDR.
The university also breached the procurement law when it directly purchased a Sh6,235,279 ambulances without competitive tendering.

Prof. Mbithi

Prof Julius Omondi Nyabundi

Maseno whose VC is Julius Nyabundi has also failed to comply with Section 143 of the public finance management regulations 2015. The regulations require all government agencies to provide detailed fixed-asset registers, indicating value, date of acquisition, description and location of assets in its possession.
At Kenyatta University Sh518 million was misused in establishing the Arusha and Kigali campuses.
Multimedia University is being investigated on unapproved expenditure amounting to Sh11,822,952. The transactions were for the purchase of computers, which was approved at Sh13,000,000 but the university went ahead to spend Sh24,822,952.
At University of Eldoret, the institution lost Sh10,661,304 when it allowed 156 students to graduate without paying all fees. The university also could not account for Sh6,816,905 it claimed to have issued as imprest. University of Eldoret VC is Teresa Akenga.
At Kabianga University, investigations into the escalation of the Sh1,075,100 pineapple plant project is hunting the management.
Egerton University vice chancellor Rose Mwonya squandered over Sh900 million some of which had been set aside for payment of parttime lecturers by her predecessor James Tuitoek.
Prof Mwonya is also accused of unilaterally promoting her son who is the registrar, Academic Affairs, Seth Owido from grade five to 10 without following due process.
She also promoted Owido, her daughter-in-law without following the due process.
The management had set aside money to pay parttime lecturers but it was squandered after Mwonya took over.
Omwonya appointed a George as her personal assistant. George had been accused and found guilty of stealing the institution’s money.
Further public universities will be investigated for not remitting dues to Paye. They include University of Nairobi, Kenyatta University, Maasai Mara University, Rongo University, Egerton University, Technical University of Kenya, Multimedia, Muranga, Kaimosi University and Taita Taveta University.
NHIF is owed dues by Egerton University, Maasai Mara, Technical University, Multimedia and Kaimosi.
Moi and Nairobi universities do not remit to Saccos and banks. Further, Nairobi has not remitted Sh1.35 billion to pension scheme with Jkuat owing Sh1.1 billion.
Francis Aduol of Technical University of Kenya has brought the institution to its knees. He was first appointed principal of the Technical University of Kenya in 2008 when it was elevated from being Kenya Polytechnic to the constituent college of the University of Nairobi.
Subsequently, he became the vice chancellor after the college attained its charter and became a fully fledged university. When Aduol took over the college, the college had surplus money running into millions of shillings due to the prudent management and good leadership of the then principal.
Soon after Aduol took over, he cleaned the coffers through uncontrolled expenditure and extravagance and today, Technical University of Kenya just like its mentor, the University of Nairobi, is insolvent and unable to pay staff salaries and remit statutory staff deductions.
At the Maasai Mara University probing claims of nepotism, tribalism, irregular hiring and firing of staff as well as corruption related activities is to be carried out.
Under corruption related activities, procurement of a car for the VC, Mary Waling’o at a cost of Sh12million but sources say the market value is far below the Sh12million. Also to be investigated is the procurement of the university bus at a cost of Sh11m but which sources say was initially to be purchased at Sh9million. The procurement of the bus did not follow the right procedure. Procurement of finance system (Enterprise Resource Planning System) at a cost of Sh20million haunts the Maasai Mara management.
The university took Sh990, 000 in cash to pay for subscription by university to Africa association of universities and others. This money was allegedly approved by Walingo but has never been accounted for.
One of the projects under investigations is the Sh15billion hospital. At UoN, a tender award to Lavington Security Firm for the provision of the security services in the entire university campuses which is spread into six colleges is of concern.
Building of key projects was subjected to many variations. The construction of a fence and renovation of the servant quarters where Mbithi lives along Mandera Road, opposite Kileleshwa Police Station, was unnecessary work and at inflated costs.
At the University of Nairobi Towers, variation orders were done under unclear circumstances to cover fictitious demolition of walls which many are saying do not exist which allegedly has been awarded to subcontractors which are unlawful.
At Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology, former vice chancellor, Prof Otieno is also under investigation.


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