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Governors upbeat after Yatani releases Sh140b

NEWS
By Jacinta Mutura | Jan 6th 2022 | 2 min read
By Jacinta Mutura | January 6th 2022
NEWS

 

Council of Governors Chairman Martin Wambora in Nairobi. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

The government has disbursed Sh140.9 billion of the Sh370 billion allocated to counties in this financial year.

Governors have lauded the National Treasury for timely disbursement, which in the past has been a bone of contention between the two levels of government.

The Council of Governors yesterday said counties have received 38 per cent of the monthly tranches of July, August, September and October, while 29 counties have received their share for November, last year.

“We have witnessed an improvement on timely Exchequer releases to counties in this financial year compared to the previous financial years. This has in turn improved budget absorption and enhanced continuity of service delivery,” said council chairman Martin Wambora.

The county chiefs have been at loggerheads with the National Treasury over financial hiccups caused by delayed release of funds, and even moved to court to compel Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani to release the money.

Counties are supposed to receive the tranches by the 15th of every month.

At some point in June last year, the county bosses had threatened to shut down operations over the delays.

“We urge the National Treasury to accelerate the disbursement of the outstanding balance of Sh42.26 billion to enable counties implement their programmes. This includes Sh12.66 billion owed to 18 counties for the month of November and Sh29.6 billion owed to 47 counties for the month of December 2021,” said Wambora.

The council also appealed the Controller of Budget to allow county governments to balance between payment of pending bills on a first-in-first-out basis.

"The matter of pending bills is one that the council and the county governments are taking very seriously. To this effect, 46 counties have submitted aging lists outlining plans of paying pending bills," added Wambora.

At the same time, the governors complained that the delay of the passage of the Sh39 billion County Governments Conditional Grants Bill, 2021, by Parliament has hampered service delivery.

“We urge the Speakers of the National Assembly and Senate to fast-track the process of appointing members to the mediation committee that will consider the Bill to ensure it is passed in the shortest time possible. This will enable counties to access the conditional grants for timely implementation of  projects and programmes.”

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