NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 11 –A Sh400 million bursary fund for needy students in Nairobi County has finally been approved by the Controller of the Budget (COB), after months of blame game between the institution and Nairobi County Treasury.
The County Executive has been blaming the Controller of Budget for the delay in disbursing the funds allocated under the 2018/19 financial year, while the Controller of Budget accused the County Treasury of failing to provide crucial documents.
City Hall’s Treasury Department in July bowed to pressure and obtained the crucial documents that COB had requested from Cooperative Bank, which accounts for bursaries that were in question.
The COB had earlier on explained that the funds could not be approved since the County Treasury had not submitted financial returns for bursaries issued under the previous financial year.
The Public Finance Management Act requires an administrator overseeing a fund to provide financial returns before the subsequent request is approved.
The Nairobi County Assembly Budget Committee held a series of meetings with County Treasury and COB, so as to look for solutions on how to end the stalemate surrounding the delay in disbursing the funds.
The Committee’s Chairman Robert Mbatia on Thursday said that COB was satisfied that the monies allocated under the 2019/19 budget had been accounted for, and assured that the bursary funds will be released immediately.
“After meeting the Controller of Budget today, he told members that the funds have been approved, and that the money will be hitting the County’s account by close of business today (Thursday),” said Mbatia.
The Budget issue had caused tension among the city legislators, leading to disruption of two assembly sessions, with the members vowing to only resume sittings after bursary funds allocated under the 2018/2019 financial year are released.