4 January 2013

Kenya: Supplementary Budget Debate Put Off

MPs yesterday interrupted the debate on the Supplementary Budget after the legality of the estimates was questioned. Yesterday's special session was forced to adjourn early after it emerged approving the budget could occasion a constitutional crisis.

On the other hand failing to pass the bill could cripple the operations of the government due to lack of money to fund government projects until the end of June 2013.

MPs walked out of the House and occasioned a quorum hitch forcing the debate on the motion to be interrupted. They took issue with the allocation to the county governments contained in the supplementary estimates, terming them as unconstitutional and threatened to shoot them down.

The MPs were angered by the failure of Finance minister Njeru Githae to allocate county governments their share of the funds as required by law.

They were also concerned by the failure of the government to present for debate three bills essential for the operationalisation of the county government after the March 4 general election.

They are the Transition County Allocation of Revenue Bill, The Division of Revenue Bill, The County Allocation Revenue Bill and the Transition County Appropriation Bill.

The constitution provides that county governments are entitled to at least 15 per cent of the national revenue in every financial year.

Based on the Sh1.46 trillion 2012/13 budget approved by Parliament last June, the entitlement to the county governments stands at Sh100 billion.

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