Kenya: Nairobi MCAs Rally Support for BBI Report

26 October 2020

The Nairobi County Assembly Jubilee Party leadership is calling on Nairobi MCAs to support the recently released Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report saying it means well for devolution.

Deputy Majority Whip Waithera Chege said that county governments stand to gain significantly if the report, set to be officially launched today (Monday), is adopted.

Ms Chege explained that the implementation of the report was the only sure way to ensure an increase in allocation of funds to counties from a current 15 percent to the proposed 35 percent.

She said with the report, counties are set to receive more funding from the national government in terms of revenue which will be allocated to the 47 devolved units in the country.

The report, which was presented to President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM party leader Raila Odinga in Kisii on Wednesday, proposes that resources to counties be increased from the current 15 percent to 35 percent.

"Nairobi County received Sh15.9 billion as equitable shareable revenue from the national government in the current financial year. This is set to increase to Sh19.3 billion in the next financial year and if BBI report is adopted then Nairobi will even get more resources," said Ms Chege.

"So I am urging my fellow MCAs to throw their weight behind the BBI report because it will not only ensure that the focus is on service delivery but also see to it that devolution is entrenched to people," she added.

The South B MCA pointed that additional resources will ensure service delivery is not constrained due to limited resources with more and more residents reached in service delivery.

The MCA further stated that the report also portends well for the MCAs and their constituents as it proposes that ward development fund be entrenched into the Constitution which shall be funded by at least five percent of all the county government's revenue in each financial year.

This, according to the report, will ensure equitable distribution and development in the wards of money allocated or collected by the county government.

"From my calculations, this will see each ward get at least Sh20 million every year for development in the wards which have often not had such sum of money. More funding means that we will be able to complete the stalled projects and roll out new ones," she said.

The MCAs allocated Ward Development Fund Sh1.3 billion for development in the 85 wards in the capital city in the recently passed budget for the current financial year.

In the current financial year, the county government has a budget of Sh37.5 billion. This implies that at least Sh1.88 billion would go to the fund, with each of the wards getting Sh21.1 million.

On his part, Majority Leader Abdi Guyo Hassan urged the MCAs to popularise the initiative saying that as Jubilee, they wholly support the BBI report.

He pointed out that the proposal that WDF be used only for development expenditure falling within the functions of the county government within the county wards and Parliament enact legislation to provide for the management of the Fund, criteria for disbursement of the funds to each ward in the county and public participation and identification of the development projects by residents of the ward will ensure that wards are developed regardless of the political affiliation of the MCA.

"This will ensure that development in wards is not at the mercy of a governor as money will be made available to the wards whether the MCA is in good or bad books with a governor. It will also give power to ward residents to identify projects they want implemented," said Mr Guyo.

Mr Guyo added that the report means well for the youth as it proposes a seven-year tax break for youth-owned businesses in addition to proposing for the establishment of business incubation centers to provide business advisory services, which includes access to capital and government contracts.

" I am urging my fellow MCAs to popularize the document and ensure that Nairobi people vote overwhelmingly for the document," he said.

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