NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 25 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has urged governors and senators to be realistic in their demand for more funds saying the national government cannot afford the Sh335 billion they are demanding.
Speaking during the funeral of the mother of former Gatanga MP Peter Kenneth, the Head of State urged county chiefs to be contented with the Sh316 billion offered to the devolved units.
He encouraged them to focus on developing their counties with the available resources and end the stalemate that has paralyzed operations in counties.
“You cannot reap where you have not sowed and it is true, we want our counties to continue with normal operations but if you ask for more money, where do you want it to come from? Please our governors, just be content with what we have given you because we do not have more money,” Kenyatta said.
He insisted that if senators continue to push for increment, then they must be prepared for pay cuts to make up for the funding gap.
“Instead of that money getting into the pockets of few individuals, just use what you have to develop your counties and if Members of Parliament ask for more money, they will have to take a pay cut because I do not have money. So, our governors and senators get to work and stop this crisis. Kenyans are waiting for your services,” Kenyatta urged.
Governors and senators have disagreed with Members of the National Assembly on the Division of Revenue Bill, occasioning a stalemate that has seen a court case filed at the Supreme Court.
The Council of Governors (C0G) filed a petition at the Supreme Court on 15 July, over the ongoing stalemate over Division of Revenue Bill.
“Very few counties have passed their budgets and quite a number have not passed their budgets because of this issue of division of revenue as they don’t know a figure to work with and it’s because of this frustration that we had to get redress from the Supreme Court,” CoG Chairperson Wycliffe Oparanya (Kakamega) said.
Deputy President William Ruto had earlier this week faulted Governors and Senators, for rushing to court for a determination on the division of revenue impasse before exhausting other dispute resolution mechanisms.
Speaking in Machakos County where he was the chief guest at a fundraising, the DP said moving to court is not a solution.
“Even those who have gone to the court, the court will give justice but remember courts don’t give allocation of money.”
“It is the work of leaders to sit and agree when there are differences and disagreements, I want to assure Kenyans that we will solve this matter,” he added.
Chief Justice David Maraga on Monday urged parties to engage in dialogue to resolve the dispute.
“We are reluctant to hear this case since it is legislative process. But we will hear it if we must,” said Maraga when the matter came up for mention.
Maraga gave the national legislature until Wednesday next week to try and unlock the stalemate failure to which the matter proceeds to hearing.
“I urge parties to negotiate an amicable settlement on the impeding issues”.