Treasury CS Ndung'u commits to disburse county funds for March and April
| May 17, 2023
National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Njuguna Ndung'u has assured counties that they will receive their equitable share revenue allocation for March and April this month.
Prof Njuguna who appeared before the Senate Finance and Budget Committee in Nairobi on Wednesday said the National Treasury is doing everything possible to disburse all the outstanding funds owed to counties to ensure smooth operations.
The Cabinet Secretary told the committee chaired by Mandera Senator Ali Roba the government is committed to ensuring the Sh385.425 billion allocated to the counties in the 2023/24 fiscal year is disbursed on time to avoid the challenges witnessed in the past.
"The Division of Revenue Bill, 2023 submitted to Parliament by the National Treasury proposed to allocate an equitable share revenue of Sh385 billion among the 47 counties while Sh425 million was obtained from the Kenya National Library Services as a transfer to the 33 counties that currently have libraries based on actual payroll amount for respective counties," said Ndung'u.
He lauded the Senate for concurring with the National Treasury to allocate county governments an equitable share of Sh385.425 billion and requested for the inclusion of the attendant resources for the transfer of library services amounting to Sh425 million to be included in equitable share allocation for the 33 counties in a phased approach.
Ndung'u asked the Senate to consider amending Clause 3 of the published Division of Revenue Bill, 2023 to include a third objective of the Bill to provide for the allocation of equitable share related to attendant resources for the payroll of transfer of library services from Kenya National Library Services.
The Treasury Cabinet Secretary asked the Senate to consider and approve the Division of Revenue Bill, 2023 as proposed and submitted to Parliament by the National Treasury on February 14 since it was aimed to facilitate the transfer of allocations made to counties from the consolidated fund to respective county revenue funds.
Roba asked Ndung'u to share a schedule of clearing of shareable revenue owed to counties and appealed to the National Treasury to look for the Sh425 million separately to be dispatched to the 33 counties adding that the Senate was not keen on amending the Division of Revenue Allocation Act.
"The only way that the National Treasury should give Sh425 million to 33 counties for the transfer of library services is to look for the said money without necessarily having to include it in the equitable shareable revenue to counties," said Roba.
County governments have warned they could grind to a halt if National Treasury fails to address delays in disbursements.
Council of Governors (COG) chairperson and Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru has asked the National Treasury to release all the monies owed to the devolved units.
Ms Waiguru said counties are owed an accumulated amount of Sh125.8 billion in arrears for the months of January, February, March, and April.
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FINANCIAL STANDARDBy Brian Ngugi