UPDATE Wednesday August 26: Nakuru Law Court frees Maasai Mara University VC Mary Walingo and four others on Ksh10m cash bail each after they denied graft charges.
UPDATE Wednesday August 26: Maasai Mara University Vice-Chancellor Prof. Mary Walingo and four other senior University staff are set to enter plea to charges of alleged misappropriation of public funds.
Senior Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Daniel Karuri confirmed that the plea will be done via video link after the Nakuru Law Courts closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji had on Monday August 24 ordered the arrest and arraignment of Maasai Mara University VC Prof. Mary Walingo and four others over alleged misappropriation of facility funds.
In statements seen by 254news.co.ke, the Vice Chancellor is accused of obtaining money through proxies.
“In the financial years of 2016-2019, several cheques were used to irregularly withdraw funds from various Maasai Mara University accounts for personal use amounting to a sum of Ksh177,007,754” revealed DPP Haji in the statement.
“There was no justification for the withdrawal of the funds from the said accounts as there are no supporting documents for the expenditure,” DPP Haji went on.
The DPP adds that analysis of the evidence obtained indicates that monies withdrawn by authorized finance officers at the University would be irregularly delivered to the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Mary Walingo through her proxies.
“Despite the University having a well-developed accounting system known as the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System and proper books of finance, there was a deliberate failure by officers in the University’s finance department to record the subject transactions/cheque withdrawals in the University’s ERP system and books of record in an attempt to hide the particular transactions from the University’s financial records,” notes the DPP.
DPP Haji revealed due to the unscrupulous activities of irregular withdrawal of funds without accounting for the same, the Maasai Mara University suffered a loss of approximately Ksh.177,007,754.
The arrest comes nearly a year after Citizen TV exposed the grand theft of funds at the university in an explosive exposé dubbed the Mara Heist in September 2019.
Ms. Walingo is set to charged alongside four other officials of the university including Prof. Simon Kasaine Ole Seno (Deputy Vice Chancellor Finance), Prof. John Almadi Obere (Acting Deputy VC Academic and Student Affairs between 2016 and 2019), Anaclet Biket Okumu (Finance Officer) and Noor Hassan Abdi (the Vice Chancellor’s driver).
The five are set to face various charges under the Anti- Corruption and Economic Crimes Act and the Penal Code.
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