Kenya: Green Movement Party Threatens to Sue CoG Over Counties Shut Down

17 September 2020

Nairobi — The Green Movement Party has threatened to take legal action against the Council of Governors for its decision to shut counties over County Revenue Formula standoff.

In a statement, the Party's Secretary-General Hamisa Zaja said there is no justifiable reason for governors to deny Kenyans their constitutional rights especially health services due to lack of money.

"Lack of money is not a reason to deny the Kenyan people a constitutional right. It cannot be very easy that the Governors find money to build stadia, markets, roads which we know are good avenues for infrastructural corruption, but not find it fit to plan and find money for Health care. The obligation when it comes to Health care on the county governments is the obligation to promote, protect and fulfill," Zaja stated.

"The Constitution is very clear on how you can derogate from this right, you can limit a right, but not denying any citizen the core content of that right like in this case."

Zaja reiterated that they will proceed with legal suits should a Kenyan fall sick and die while seeking medical attention in any County hospital and fail to be attended to.

On Wednesday, the Council of Governors (CoG) directed all county employees to proceed on a fourteen-day leave with non-essential services suspended forthwith over budgetary constraints.

In an advisory dispatched to county chiefs, Council of Governors Chairperson Wycliffe Oparanya attributed the decision to the stalemate over revenue sharing formula at the Senate.

He further said county health facilities will stop inpatient admissions with health workers in the facilities directed to provide minimal outpatient services.

Oparanya said the CoG will "in the meantime continue to push for the speedy release of county funds."

Counties are yet to receive their equitable share of the revenue for three months into the current Financial Year 2020/2021.

The Kakamega Governor said the delay in the release of funds has had serious implications in the general operations of county governments and payment of salaries to county staff.

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday urged Senators to urgently resolve the revenue sharing impasse to avoid disruption of services in the counties, in a meeting which was also attended by ODM leader Raila Odinga and the Kakamega Governor Oparanya.

The President also said the government will endeavor to raise next financial year's shareable revenue by Sh50 billion.

The Senate which has failed for a record 10 times to unlock the revenue sharing formula deadlock is expected to give the way forward next week after holding a Kamukunji on Tuesday.

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