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State’s ‘luxury’ spending on the rise

BUSINESS
By Macharia Kamau | July 9th 2019
Woman traveller with travel bag or luggage walking in airport terminal walkway for travel abroad.

Government agencies’ spending on luxuries went up despite various attempts last year to implement austerity measures.

Among the areas that the Government had targeted as prime candidates for reduced spending included domestic and foreign travel as well as hospitality.

A new report on government spending for the nine months to March 31 this year, however, indicates that State officers have increased their expenditure in the three areas.

The report by the Controller of Budget shows that domestic travel over the nine months went up 36 per cent to Sh7.7 billion compared to Sh5.6 billion over a similar period last year.

“Under operations and maintenance, domestic travel expenditure recorded the highest payments at Sh7.7 billion…  Sh4.2 billion on foreign travel, and Sh3.9 billion on hospitality,” said the COB report.

In the previous year, COB had cited the three for high spending, whereby over a similar period Government officials had spent Sh5.6 billion on domestic travel, Sh3.7 billion (hospitality) and Sh3.1 billion (foreign travel).

Over the period, domestic travel accounted for 1.1 per cent of the recurrent expenditure for Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), compared to 0.8 per cent the previous period.

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