City Hall pays part of Sh353m Kemsa debt, buys more drugs

Wednesday March 18 2020
By COLLINS OMULO

City Hall has paid Sh120 million out of the Sh353 million it owes the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (Kemsa).

Finance executive Pauline Kahiga made a payment of Sh166.9 million last Friday, Sh46 million being for supply of medicine to county health facilities.

In January, then Nairobi Health Executive Vesca Kangogo said the Sh120 million had been included in a Sh1.4 billion amount for settling bills.

She said the amount, cleared by the Pending Bills Committee and the office of the Auditor-General, was aimed at ensuring hospitals did not run out of supplies.

“We are paying the reconciled amount now and will ensure we clear the balance by the end of the financial year,” she said.

She added that in October 2018, the county ordered and received drugs that would last until the end of the year.

DISPUTE

A fall-out between the county and Kemsa in 2017 led to suspension of the supply of drugs, forcing many to spend more at private facilities.

They reached an agreement in October that year, with the State agency resuming supply with a first consignment worth Sh66.9 million.

Following the agreement, City Hall committed to make orders quarterly to ensure facilities have enough medicine.

Last December, the county paid Sh6 million for supplies to Pumwani Maternity Hospital.

On January 16, data from Kemsa revealed that out of the Sh2.8 billion that seven counties owed it, Nairobi topped the list with a debt of Sh353 million.