Taxpayers were spared close to Sh11 billion after two State agencies failed to use up their election budgets, new data shows.
The office of the President was among the six State offices that gobbled up their entire budgets while only the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and the Office of Registrar of Political Parties had money to spare in an election that was financed by two budgets.
According to the Post-election Economic and Fiscal Report prepared by National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich, the 2017 elections cost taxpayers Sh54.1 billion out of the Sh65 billion that had been approved.
IEBC, which had the lion’s share of the budget, spent Sh46.2 billion in an exercise that saw a repeat Presidential election after the first round was annulled by the Supreme Court.
While Sh20.2 billion came from the 2016/2017 budget, Sh26 billion was from the 2017/2018 budget.
IEBC’s expenditure represented a saving of Sh10.6 billion when compared to the approved estimates of Sh56.8 billion. The commission’s expenditure mainly goes into the compilation of the voters' register, political parties preliminaries, procurement of election materials and drafting of election regulations.
The Office of the Registrar of Political Parties, on the other hand, spent Sh123.7 million, being 35.2 per cent of their total budget of Sh351 million.
While the two offices saved taxpayers a total of Sh10.8 billion, the rest of the offices spent their entire allocations.
The Office of the President spent its entire approved budget of Sh32.5 million while the State Department for Interior spent all its Sh7.45 billion allocation.
This represented 11.5 per cent of the election budget. In addition, the department spent Sh146.3 million during President Uhuru Kenyatta’s swearing-in ceremony.
"The electoral process requires intense security before, during and after the election period. The main activities that require improved security include campaigns and nomination of candidates by the various political parties before the election date," said the National Treasury.
The Judiciary also spent the entire Sh158 million allocated to it, with Treasury saying that this was due to the many disputes filed in courts after the General Election.
The Foreign Affairs Ministry, then under current Education CS Amina Mohamed used the Sh102.9 million, with entire amount being spent on the assumption of office event.
The State Department for Arts and Culture gobbled up Sh15 million that it was given during the swearing-in ceremony of President Uhuru Kenyatta.
The State Department for Broadcasting and Telecommunication for its part used all the Sh36.95 million that it had been allocated.