Kisumu Governor Anyang’ Nyong’o has apologised to the family of Jaramogi Oginga Odinga for the inclusion of his name in a list of land rate defaulters.
The late vice-president, registered as Ajuma Oginga Odinga, and Dr Oburu Oginga were in the list. A committee said that Ajuma Oginga Odinga, the owner of Kisumu Bloc 12/222, owed the county Sh7,774,099 and Dr Oginga Sh295,743.
Prof Nyong’o’s apology came after family members Omondi Odinga and Ruth Odinga termed the report malicious.
Mr Omondi claimed it was aimed at ruining the family’s reputation.
In a statement on Monday, Governor Nyong’o said the late Jaramogi’s name was published “erroneously”.
He did not, however, mention Dr Oginga’s case.
The governor explained that the county compiled the list in an effort to manage the ballooning land rates account, a circumstance that has had serious implications on revenue management.
“This was an elaborate process that entailed reconciling the accounts resident in the various payment platforms, dating back to the defunct local authorities,” Mr Nyong’o said.
“The reconciliation process entailed crosschecking all relevant information, including minutes from sessions by the full councils of those defunct authorities [as well as] the decisions by the then state department of local authorities and the county Cabinet.”
The final document of the exercise, the county boss explained further, had not been processed through the county Cabinet for final action.
“It is therefore unfortunate that one of the many draft pieces was erroneously sent for publication in one of the dailies. It is unfortunate that this version sent to the public is not the final document being sent to the Cabinet and that is has caused untold embarrassment to the government,” he said.
“[This is] because some of the names appearing in that list were cleared during the processing period, following receipt of relevant documentation, and do not appear in the final document.”
The county chief went on to say, “One such name is that of this country’s icon in the independence struggle and the first vice-president, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga. The governor sends an unreserved apology to the family of the first vice-president for embarrassment caused by this publication.”
Governor Nyong’o said the final list will be published in due course.
“Once again, on behalf of the County Government of Kisumu, unreserved apologies to the family of H.E. Jaramogi Oginga Odinga for this enormous error,” he wrote.