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Interviews for Auditor-General post to start Tuesday

Friday May 29 2020
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Former National Treasury bureaucrat Mutua Kilaka. He heads the team that will recruit the next auditor-general. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By BRIAN WASUNA

Only two fresh faces have made it to the list of candidates for the position of Auditor-General, as former Treasury bureaucrat Mutua Kilaka leads a new panel in filling the vacancy next week.

Last year, a panel led by former Deloitte executive Sammy Onyango said that it was unable to find a suitable replacement after interviewing 17 candidates.

Mr Onyango said the prospects were disregarded because of either qualifications or integrity issues.

Last time out, the best candidate scored 70 per cent but did not have a practicing certificate and was not in good standing with Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK), which regulates the industry.

Despite demands by members of the National Assembly’s Public Accounts Committee, Public Investment Committee and Special Funds Accounts committees to make results of the interviews public, the information remains a preserve of Mr Onyango’s panel and President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The office fell vacant in August last year after Mr Edward Ouko retired after eight years of service.

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In the new list containing 10 candidates, who will be interviewed on Tuesday, only former ICPAK Chairman Benson Okundi and ex-Bungoma County finance boss Paul Masinde did not appear before the Sammy Onyango-led panel.

The other eight were among the 17 individuals dismissed. Seven of the candidates work at the Office of the Auditor-General.

The prospects include Nancy Gathungu, Elizabeth Nguringa Mwathi, Idris Abdi Abdullahi, Mr Leonard Lari and Dennis Theuri Kariuki.

Of the 87 people that applied for the position in the fresh recruitment process, only 10 were women.

In January, activist Okiya Omtatah and Katiba Institute unsuccessfully sued to stop the re-advertisement of a vacancy after Mr Onyango’s team failed to find a successor, paving the way for Mr Kilaka’s team.

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