KISII, Kenyam Jul 19 – Devolution Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa has urged the two Houses of Parliament to embrace dialogue in a bid to resolve the current stalemate on the Division of Revenue Allocation Bill.
Wamalwa said the funding of counties was crucial to strengthening devolution.
Speaking at an Agricultural Training Centre in Kisii on Thursday where he launched a Sh170 million Banana Processing Factory, CS Wamalwa said an amicable solution should be reached to end the conflict pitting members of the National Assembly against senators and governors.
Wamalwa said President Uhuru Kenyatta is committed to ensuring that devolution works as part of his legacy agenda.
He asked senators and their colleagues in the National Assembly to embrace dialogue even as the matter goes on in court.
Senate leaders Kipchumba Murkomen (Majority Leader), James Orengo (Minority Leader) and Legal Affairs and Human Rights Chairperson Samson Cherargey led their colleagues to file a petition at the High Court on Monday contesting over 20 Bills passed by the National Assembly without their input.
Justice Weldon Korir referred the petition to Chief Justice David Maraga who will constitute a three-judge bench to hear the application.
Wamalwa spoke after Kisii Governor James Ongwae appealed to the national government to release Sh330 billion to counties, representing 10 percent of the Sh3 trillion national budget.
The CS asked Kenyans to use the opportunity and contribute to an impending constitutional review process to strengthen devolution to benefit Kenyans.
The European Union (EU) channeled Sh110 million towards the Banana Processing Factory with Kisii County allocating Sh60 million.
Governor Ongwae commended banana farmers for forming a cooperative society to market their produce, saying it will weed out middlemen, who exploited and impoverished them.
He urged banana farmers in neighboring counties to increase production of bananas and deliver them to the newly built factory for value addition to sustain it and boost their incomes.
EU representative Vincent de Boer said the union was committed to enhancing value addition for agricultural produce to empower local farmers contribute to the country’s economy.