After a series of exposés on the Irene Mureithi led Child Welfare Society of Kenya (CWSK), the government has now decided to act.
The scandal in which mistreatment of children is the order of the day was first aired by a local media house, however, staff from CWSK contacted cnyakundi.com because there were many important details that were left out.
This site then exposed a lot of issues from financial impropriety, mistreatment of staff and fraud.
In a letter dated 16th September, 2019, the head of public service Joseph K. Kinyua writes to Cabinet Secretary for Ministry of Labour and Social Protection Ukur Yatani (also the acting CS National Treasury) ordering a special audit on CWSK.
The audit which is supposed to cover 10 areas, as specified by Kinyua, is expected to be finalised on 30th November, 2019.
The letter orders the immediate stop of ongoing projects and also wants to know the financial status of the government entity.
Below is the letter in full text.
The Confidential Letter
The Child Welfare Society of Kenya has been the subject of adverse media reports relating to abuse of children under its care. It has further emerged that the governance and management framework of its operations is sub-optimal, and a comprehensive review of the status is necessary for the purpose of undertaking remedial action.
Consequently, the Inspectorate of State Corporations has been directed to undertake a special audit of the Society. The audit will be undertaken in concert with officers from the National Treasury, Office of Attorney General, Ministry responsible for Public Service, Ministry of Health and the Department responsible for Children Services in your Ministry. By copy of this letter, the relevant Cabinet Secretaries are requested to urgently identify and designate adequate and suitable officers for the purpose.
The audit will incorporate the following parameters of investigation in addition to any other considerations:
- The governance status of entity, including the board and management structures and competencies for purposes of supporting the operations of the organization;
- The management structure for the entity’s homes, including the standard of care and support for children, provisions and supplies, socio-support structures and any other relevant elements,
- The budget, expenditure and financial reports of the organization as against market values and approved project plans and feasibility reports;
- Budget controls, imprest and advance management, bank account management, inventory and stores management and general financial systems
- The status of compliance with policy guidelines as regularly issued, and in particular the status of remittances for statutory deductions, surplus management in particular;
- The status of adherence to procurement procedures, legal documentation including contracts and contract management, due diligence of prospective contractors, propriety of goods and services supplied, project monitoring and reporting;
- The status of human resource policy compliance, including staffing levels, remuneration levels, casuals management and performance management frameworks;
- Legal audit of the entity structure, litigation cases, contingent liabilities, legal fee analysis, service level agreements, Attorney General approvals and contract review;
- Any other parameters as determined necessary
- Over a period of three financial years.
With this arrangement in place, it would be anticipated that the audit can be finalized and concluded as soon as practicable, and in any case not later than 30th November 2019. In the interim, and considering the circumstances, it is recommended that all proposed and on-going projects and initiatives be temporarily suspended, pending finalization and conclusion of the audit. Activities that are mission critical in nature within the projects and programmes as determined by the Ministry and the Board may however be exempted with due notification to the audit team.
We welcome the support of the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection and the facilitation necessary to operationalize the audit assessment, as well as the securing of cooperation and commitment of relevant offices and personnel towards its successful conclusion.
JOSEPH K. KINYUA, EGH HEAD OF THE PUBLIC SERVICE
The letter was copied to
Justice (Rtd) P. Kihara Kariuki, CBS Attorney General State Law Office NAIROBI
Prof. Margaret Kobia, CBS Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender NAIROBI
Mrs Sicily Kariuki, EGH Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Health NAIROBI
Dr. Julius Muia, CBS Principal Secretary National Treasury NAIROBI
Theodora Gichana Ag. Inspector of State Corporations Harambee House Annexe NAIROBI
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