Counties paid Sh162b wages but avoided development
SEE ALSO :War over division of revenueThe CoB said four county assemblies reported higher expenditure on sitting allowance than Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) recommended monthly ceiling of Sh124,800. They are Busia (Sh146,149), Homa Bay (Sh148,214), Nyamira (Sh150,097) and Tana River (Sh138,706). Budget allocation The report cites Migori County Assembly for reporting an expenditure of Sh69.11 million without a budget allocation for MCAs sitting allowance in the approved Budget. In the last two financial years, MCAs have spent a cumulative Sh3.6 billion in sitting allowances. The county staff and MCAs also travelled round the world at taxpayer’s expense, incurring Sh11.36 billion on domestic and foreign trips during the reporting period. This amount comprised Sh9.86 billion on domestic travel and Sh1.5 billion on foreign travel. “This was a decrease of 6.5 per cent compared to Sh12.15 billion incurred in 2016/17 financial period,” stated the report.
SEE ALSO :Devolution should bring community prideThe CoB revealed that in absolute terms, Machakos County had the highest expenditure of domestic and foreign travel at Sh642.93 million, followed by Nairobi and Kisii at Sh641.11 million and Sh597.73 million respectively. The counties that had the least absolute expenditure were Kirinyaga, Samburu, and Elgeyo Marakwet at Sh167.21 million, Sh116.93 million and Sh110.65 million respectively. As MCAs and other staff laughed all the way to the bank and toured the world, billions in development funds remained unspent. The CoB found that counties absorbed only 57.8 per cent of the annual development budget, which translates to Sh107.44 billion. Mr Masha urged county governments to establish optimal staffing levels to ensure expenditures on salaries and wages remained within set limit of 35 per cent of their total expenditures. “The expenditure on non-core activities such as travelling should be rationalised to free funds for implementation of key development programmes,” he wrote in the report.
Do not miss out on the latest news. Join the Standard Digital Telegram channel HERE.