7 June 2014

Kenya: Governors Want Some County Laws Amended

THE Council of Governors yesterday passed a resolution that "anti-devolution" county laws be amended. Speaking at the end of three-day county government consultative meetings at Safari Park Hotel in Nairobi, the vice chairman of the council Salim Mvurya said they have gone through all the county-related bills that are before the Senate and the National Assembly and have come up with resolutions on how to amend some of them.

"We are not taking the legislative mandate of Parliament, we are just taking a position on county laws and bills to ensure devolution is protected," he said.

Mvurya said the council, through county attorneys and executives, have gone through 23 laws for agriculture, trade, roads, water, finance and other matters, and have made resolutions on some contentious ones.

He said the Public Finance Management Act, which requires counties to spend 60 per cent of their budgets on development and 40 per cent on operations, was among them.

"It should be noted that the county governments, just like the national government have employed staff and with this scenario of high wage bill, it is unrealistic to spend 40 per cent on operations," Mvurya said.

"Ratios in legislation is unfair for counties." Mvurya said the governors' stand on some of the bills is a "continuation of public participation" in devolution.

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