Home Business UN pay for KDF falls Sh8bn as audit reveals ghost soldiers

UN pay for KDF falls Sh8bn as audit reveals ghost soldiers


Economy

UN pay for KDF falls Sh8bn as audit reveals ghost soldiers


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KDF officer in Somalia. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • The Treasury has since slashed its full-year target from Amisom grants for the period ending June 2021 to Sh7.4 billion from an earlier goal of Sh24.1 billion.
  • Kenya expects a further Sh2.5 billion in the financial year starting July, according to its budgetary projections, before the funding dries out on full withdrawal of the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF).
  • Soldiers usually serve for one year which may be extended by a few months or cut short depending on the situation.

Cash reimbursed to Kenya for its troops fighting Al-Shabaab militia in Somalia for the half-year period through December 2020 fell Sh8 billion short of Treasury’s target at a time an audit queried payment to non-existent soldiers.

Latest exchequer statistics show grants from African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom), funded by European Union (EU) and its partners, amounted to Sh1.45 billion in the July-December period against a budget goal of nearly Sh9.45 billion.

The Amisom receipts represent a Sh489.60 million, or 25.22 per cent, drop compared with Sh1.94 billion in a similar period a year earlier.

The disclosures come on the back of a leaked damming audit report by PwC Associates Ltd (Mauritius) which has queried payment of soldiers who had left the mission, pointing to weak accountability measures in the payroll that resulted in possible loss of millions of dollars between 2016 and 2018.

The Treasury has since slashed its full-year target from Amisom grants for the period ending June 2021 to Sh7.4 billion from an earlier goal of Sh24.1 billion.

Kenya expects a further Sh2.5 billion in the financial year starting July, according to its budgetary projections, before the funding dries out on full withdrawal of the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF).

Soldiers usually serve for one year which may be extended by a few months or cut short depending on the situation.

Conservative estimates earlier showed the international community pays $1,028 (Sh112,052) for each soldier per month. Their respective governments then deduct about $200 (Sh21,800) for administrative costs, meaning the soldiers take home about $800 (Sh87,200).

The EU funds cater for allowances for the Amisom troops and police, international and local civilian staff salaries, operational costs of their offices, among others.

The refunds to Kenya have been falling with indications that Nairobi has gradually been reducing its defence forces from the war-torn country.

The 15-member UN Security Council on February 25 agreed that African Union should maintain their troops under Amisom until March 14.



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