Wednesday, 24 July 2019 06:38

Governors Present Advisory on the Division of Revenue Bill 2019 to the Supreme Court.

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“The Senate will not allow Kenyans go back to the retrogressive days. We will continue advocating for Devolution because of the improvement and development we have witnessed among our people.” Sen. Kipchumba Murkomen.
The Council of Governors led by the Chairman, H.E Wycliffe Oparanya together with the Senate and Members of the County Assemblies on Monday 15th July 2019 jointly filed an advisory to the Supreme Court on the legal issues arising from the Division of Revenue Bill 2019. The delegation converged at the Intercontinental Hotel and thereafter walked to the Supreme Court to present the advisory to the apex court.
This decision came following the recent events between the Senate and the National Government on the County allocations. The National Assembly and the Senate had failed to come to a consensus on what County Governments were to be allocated from the revenue collected nationally.
Over the last six (6) years, we have witnessed onslaughts on devolution. In the first term of County Governments, we saw devolution being undermined through formulation and enactment of centralist policies and laws. “The Council sought judicial intervention severally to declare some laws unconstitutional since they weakened devolution. In this second term, devolved governance is being attacked by denying County Governments their much needed resources”, said Council of Governors Chairman.
The delegation later proceeded for a meeting at the KICC with the Senate, members of the County Assemblies and the Civil Societies, where they would discuss, the way forward for Devolution as county services were being shut down due to poor funding of the devolved functions. Speaking during the meeting, the Senate leader of Minority, Senator James Oreng’o said, “Kenyans voted for a devolved system of governance when they promulgated a new constitution, it is therefore against the spirit of the Constitution when Members of the National Assembly pass bills that are draconian and against devolution. It is the role of the Senate to defend and protect Devolution and we promise to protect that which Kenyans voted for.”
Adding to the discussions, Senate leader of Majority, Sen. Kipchumba Murkomen noted, Elgeyo Marakwet County, for example, has been among the most affected counties where services have failed due to poor funding. Devolution was voted in so that resources and service delivery would be experienced at the grassroot level. “We as the Senate will not allow Kenyans go back to our retrogressive days and we will continue advocating for Devolution because of the improvement and development we have witnessed among our people,” assured the majority leader.
Bodies tasked to give oversight to Government, indicated that the National Assembly has to adhere to recommendations given by Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA) which is a Constitutional body mandated with Revenue Allocation. Speaking during the meeting, Wanjiru Gikonyo, The Institution for Social Accountability (TISA) National Coordinator, noted that the challenge Kenya is facing is that national Government treats the revenue raised nationally as the revenue of the National Government. However, Article 202 of the Constitution provides for equitable share of the revenue raised nationally between the National and County Governments to be shared equitably. “Counties are entitled to an equitable share of the revenue raised nationally, and this must be determined by an objective criteria. Further, counties may get additional allocations from the share of the National Government”.
After the mention of the case, Chief Justice David Maraga announced Wednesday 31st July as the hearing date.
County Governments continue to hope that through the collaboration and consultations between the Senate and the National Assembly, the Equitable Share will be increased from the initial proposed amount of Ksh 316 Billion to what CRA has proposed which is Ksh 335 Billion to allow County Governments serve Kenyans better and efficiently.

Read 562 times Last modified on Thursday, 25 July 2019 10:29

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