Just one per cent of Kenyan national budget spent 'effectively and legally', audit reveals

Report follows Barack Obama's warning on the 'cancer of corruption' on the African continent

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Just one per cent of Kenya’s national budget can be properly accounted for, according to official audits released only days after Barack Obama warned of the “cancer of corruption” in African nations.

Kenyan auditor general Edward Ouko’s report on the 2013-2014 financial year revealed that of the Sh1.3 trillion (£6.3 billion) budget, only 1.2 per cent was spent legally and effectively.

In the 361-page report, auditors claimed that approximately Sh600bn (£3.76bn) “had issues” and could not be properly accounted for, while they were unable to tell whether a further Sh390bn (£2.4bn) had been spent legally.

Mr Ouko’s report, presented to the Kenyan parliament on Tuesday, includes a list of 17 governmental offices whose financial records appear to show misleading figures, Kenya's The Daily Nation reported.

Among them, the Ministry of Health could not explain where Sh22.5bn (approximately £141m) had been spent. The Department of Transport had racked up unexplained expenses of Sh22Bn (£138m), while the Department of Education had spent Sh12bn (£75m).

The hugely embarrassing figures have emerged only days after the US president’s first tour of Kenya, during which he told the nation that corruption was holding back its development.

"Here in Kenya, it's time to change habits, and decisively break that cycle, because corruption holds back every aspect of economic and civil life," Mr Obama told Kenyans during his visit to his father’s country.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta promised to take control of corruption in March. So far, one minister has been charged with an abuse of office while a second has been charged with obstructing an investigation.

A spokesperson for the Kenyan government did not respond to requests for comment.

Additional reporting by Associated Press and Reuters