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Auditor General Edward Ouko defends reduction of MPs, MCAs, and cutting of Commissions

By Moses Njagih | Published Fri, March 2nd 2018 at 10:31, Updated March 2nd 2018 at 10:34 GMT +3
Auditor General Edward Ouko wants number of MPs and MCAs reduced. [Courtesy]


Auditor General Edward Ouko has opened a potential battlefront with legislators after proposing a reduction in the number of MPs and MCAs.

Mr Ouko said sustaining elected leaders was taking a toll on Kenyans.

The Auditor General and his team that conducted a socio-economic audit of the Constitution also called for a change of law to reduce or merge constitutional commissions, have fewer commissioners and see some serving part-time. 

Ouko revisited the decision that has been opposed by legislators in the past, saying a socio-economic audit of the positions created by the Constitution had revealed Kenyans were over-represented, with the burden of maintaining these offices sitting too heavily on the electorate.

His sentiments come at a time when the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission has kicked off the process of delimitation of electoral areas.

Ouko argued the number of representatives in Kenya was above the global average, and burdensome for a country that is already over-taxed.

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“The reduction of MPs and MCAs should be done without compromising national values on diversity, protection of vulnerable groups and the marginalised, and the equality principle regarding gender,” Ouko told the Committee on the Implementation of the Constitution.

There are 416 MPs - 349 members of the National Assembly and 67 senators. There are 1,450 elected ward representatives, and more are nominated under a gender top-up formula.

Meanwhile, Controller of Budget Agnes Odhiambo has proposed that the national government Constituency Development Fund, initially known as CDF, should be moved from MPs' control.

Ms Odhiambo is also opposed to the creation of a similar fund for MCAs.

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