Did Florence Mutua Loot Funds Meant For Busia Women Groups?

Busia County Women Representative Florance Mutua

“The amount involved is more than Kshs. 500 million which was channelled through Mutua’s office to finance women groups to initiate development projects, but as we speak there is completely nothing to show, so where is the money?”- Busia County Maendeleo Ya Wanawake Chairperson Mrs Margaret Masinde

By Our Investigation Team

A forensic audit carried out by the Office of the Auditor-General of Kenya Nancy Gathungu has revealed how Busia County Women Representative Florance Mutua was involved in massive misappropriation of funds- a half a billion shillings to be exact, that should have been distributed to women groups in the county in the last five years.

Various Women Groups leaders from across Busia County are now demanding that she explains and account for every cent that was allocated to her office by the treasury through the Women Reps Fund that should have financed and empowered women development projects in the county.

The Busia County Maendeleo Women Group Chairperson Mrs Margaret Masinde told The Weekly Vision Online thus: “The amount involved is more than Kshs. 500 million which was channelled through Mutua’s office to finance women groups to initiate development projects, but as we speak there is completely nothing to show, so where is the money?” Mrs Masinde said that the County Women Rep Mrs Mutua has been loud politicking, but on the ground, nothing has ever happened since she was voted into the position, members of the women groups in the county continue to degenerate into poverty.

According to the National Government statistics, every sub-county or constituency is supposed to receive Ksh. 7 million annually to financially empower women in their development projects, specifically those engaged in income-generating activities

She failed to support women groups gain access to affordable loans from the National Women Development Fund or the Youth Fund. Money remitted from the National Treasury was meant to empower women in all the seven sub-counties in Busia County, but on the ground, no Group has received a shilling.

According to the National Government statistics, every sub-county or constituency is supposed to receive Ksh. 7 million annually to financially empower women in their development projects, specifically those engaged in income-generating activities. There are several Women Groups and Savings and Credit Cooperatives across Busia County involved in a wide range of income-generating activities but are perennially starved of cash with virtually no access to affordable credit to boost their activities. The County has North and South Teso, Nambale, Matayos, Butula, Funyula and Budalangi sub-counties or constituencies.

Lucy Marende from Budalangi’s sub-county’s Nanyanza Women Group said: “We have heard a lot about this Fund under Mrs Mutua, but I can assure you that Budalang’i has never seen a cent, yet we know that our sub-county is supposed to be getting at least Kshs. 7 million to support women development projects.” Mrs Marende went on: “We demand that Mutua accounts for every cent that was channelled through this fund to empower women in this county, failure to account for the millions must lead to immediate legal action and recovery of the same.”

She said that there were only un-confirmed stories that some individual women in some of the sub-counties receive hoes from Mrs Mutua , just like the case with Deputy President William Ruto’s wheelbarrows to some youths that cannot be accounted for.

Nafoyo Women Group leader Beatrice Ongoma from Butula town said: “Mutua is a stranger who married to “our” son. She has been in office for the last ten years, she is also in charge of this multi-million shillings Fund, but we have never seen money circulating in Butula, she must tell us where the money is”

The story is even worse in the Butula sub-county where Mutua is supposedly married, with Women Groups saying that the whole business was a con game, in reality, nothing has reached any Women Group or individuals. Nafoyo Women Group leader Beatrice Ongoma from Butula town said: “Mutua is a stranger who married to “our” son. She has been in office for the last ten years, she is also in charge of this multi-million shillings Fund, but we have never seen money circulating in Butula, she must tell us where the money is.”

Mrs Ongoma argued that this is public taxpayer’s money meant to financially and economically empower women not only in Busia County but all counties across the country and must be accounted for. “We simply want our money that Mutua has received each financial year from the National Treasury to support Women development Projects. Let her show us which projects she has initiated or financed through the Fund or even through her financial resources,” said Mrs Mary Okiring of Kaplon Women Group of North Teso sub-county.

Mrs Okiring said it was wrong that there was nothing to show in all the sub-counties, monies allegedly channelled to empower the women to improve their lives financially and economically in efforts to eradicate rampant poverty in all the sub-counties.

The same sentiments were echoed by women group leaders in Teso South, Nambale, Matayos and Funyula constituencies demanding immediate forensic legal action against Florence Mutua for allegedly abusing the fund with reckless impunity.

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