The curse of the finance docket in Isiolo County
In the past few days social media was wash with rumors that the current Isiolo County Executive in charge of the Finance and Economic Planning Mr. Mohamud Hajji has resigned. Mr Mohamud has been holding the Finance and Economics Planning docket since the resignation of Mr. Mwenda Thiribi who cited irreconcilable differences with the Governor in his resignation letter. Mr. Thiribi, an Industrial Economist, was by far the best mind in Isiolo County Executive and his untimely resignation was just but a reflection of how rotten the system at Isiolo Treasury is. Mr. Thiribi was an economic guru, one of the mastermind of Vision 2030 and at the time was seen to be the mover and shaker of Dr Kuti’s cabinet because of his experience in Economic development and his unquestionable integrity. In just few weeks in office he was cleaning up the closet and putting up a system that would make it impossible for funds to disappear without a trace. In one instance he had hinted at the existence of leakages that made it easier for few people to siphon money out of the County, and made a promise that he will make sure it doesn’t happen under his watch. They hurriedly pushed him out and tried to tarnish his good reputation so as to justify his shock resignation that exposed Dr Kuti’s economic malfeasance and managerial incompetence.
Mr. Thiribi in his resignation letter raised concerns of the existence of cartels who had locked him out of IFMIS and were using his signature in transactions without his knowledge. The rot was too awful and his efforts to notify the Governor ignored. He quietly concluded that the cartels had a blessing from above. In his long resignation letter, Mr. Thiribi was categorical that Isiolo County coffers was being swindled into the pockets of a few people. It appeared like Mr. Thiribi knew a lot and no one wanted that to reach the public. The plot was simple, frustrate him until he decides to leave the office out of his own free will. Mr. Thiribi was an honest man and of reproachable integrity and the system had to find a away to either silence him or make him look bad. He chose to bolt out. The cartels it seemed had won the battle but will they lose the war? Only time and the people of Isiolo could tell. The end of his era marked the beginning of a period in which there was little scrutiny of what happens at the room where the County budget is spent. The office remained closed for months with things happening in a new office set up in Meru County. After Mr Thiribi resigned, the Governor decided to give the docket to one Mr. Mohamud Hajji. The little known new CECM appeared like a man the system could work with but could they have miscalculated. A few months into his job, Mr Mohamud would face similar obstacles like his predecessor. The cartels had sought to use him to enrich themselves and later blame him when things went south.
Few days ago Mr Mohamud Haji released a message through social that appeared more of a damage control for a county that is quickly disappearing into the darkness of economic downturn and hanging on a cliff. The message was ambiguous and did not explicitly say whether the CECM was resigning or not but he confirmed he was joining another organization. In the milky haze of amnesia the people of Isiolo tend to forget quickly but losing one Finance CECM is rare but possible but losing two in one term is extraordinary. What exactly is chasing professionals from this post? As alluded to Mr Thiribi and now confirmed by Mr Mohamud, there are forces behind the curtain but with express nod and wink from above that are running the show. After a tug of war it appears,people with integrity or professionals who wanted to preserve their reputation and not soil their names just had to give way. The cartels words in this case was not falling on fertile ears and the professionals resisted the orders to channel the public money into their private pockets. In this day and age of individualism and consumerism, it is rare to find people who stand by the principles of the greater good and risk losing their jobs. It appears this two did for Isiolo. Mr Mohamud Haji appeared to dillydally though on the reasons for leaving his posts and played to control the untold damage his resignation could cause the county chief. If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it’s definitely a duck.