Ruto brokers deal on money Bill deadlock

Deputy President William Ruto chairs meeting attended by governors, MPs and senior Government officials in Nairobi. [DPPS]

Parliament and the National Treasury have until Thursday to resolve a revenue allocation stalemate. 

Deputy President William Ruto yesterday chaired an informal meeting meant to iron out pending issues. The meeting involved governors, Controller of Budget, Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA), National Assembly and Senate.

After the meeting, Dr Ruto told journalists that there was need for Treasury and Parliament to find common ground to pave way for service delivery at the counties.

“This is a matter of great concern to the country. It must be solved within the shortest time possible. Counties need the Division of Revenue Act passed for Senate to pass allocation of revenues to facilitate transaction of business at the counties,” he said.

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The Deputy President said he was impressed by the manner in which involved parties were engaging in cordial discussions with a view to finding a lasting solution to the stalemate.

“I call upon all the responsible arms of the Government to provide support to solve the problem as soon as possible,” said Ruto.

He reiterated the Government’s commitment to ensuring devolution succeeds, saying it had transformed the lives of millions of Kenyans.

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“We have demonstrated our commitment beyond any reasonable doubt that we fully support devolution. We will continue to work together in improving the lives of all Kenyans across the country,” said Ruto.

Council of Governors Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya expressed optimistic that the deadlock would soon be unlocked to enable activities at the counties go on uninterrupted.

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“We held a meeting today chaired by the Deputy President; negotiations are ongoing to solve the stalemate. A solution must be found by this Thursday,” said the Kakamega governor.

Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich said no one had any intention of frustrating devolution as had been claimed by some leaders.

He said the stalemate should not be misconstrued to mean that the Government did not support devolution. Mr Rotich added that Treasury was only working within the available resources on budgetary matters.

“We are sure an amicable solution will be found,” he said.

Another informal meeting, which will be chaired by Ruto will be held tomorrow.

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National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale, his Senate counterpart Kipchumba Murkomen, Senate Majority Whip Susan Kihika and CRA Chairperson Jane Kiringai attended yesterday's meeting.

Others were Governors Patrick Khaemba (Trans Nzoia), Mwangi wa Iria (Muranga), Mutahi Kahiga (Nyeri), Lee Kinyanjui (Nakuru), Anyang' Nyong’o (Kisumu), Ali Roba (Mandera), Wycliffe Wangamati (Bungoma) and Muthomi Njuki (Tharaka Nithi).

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Deputy President William RutoParliamentTreasuryDivision of Revenue ActCouncil of Governors Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya