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MPs poke holes in county revenue allocation plan

By | April 28th 2012 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

By Steve Mkawale and Grace Wekesa

MPs have faulted the formula used by the Commission on Revenue Allocation in its proposals on the sharing of resources by counties.

Four legislators Friday dismissed the proposed CRA formula, saying it is erroneous and unacceptable. They claimed it proposes to allocate huge funds to areas already developed, neglecting regions which were marginalised by past regimes.

MPs Danson Mungatana (Garsen), Adan Duale (Dujis), Abdul Bahari (Isiolo South) and Chachu Ganya of North Horr said they would lobby their colleagues to reject the formula when it comes to Parliament for ratification.

"The constitutional mandate on the distribution formula lies with the Senate. Since Senate has not been constituted, the Constitution provides that Parliament shall carry out the functions until its formed," said Mungatana, a member of the Parliamentary Budget Committee.

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He said the responsibility of working out the formula for allocating public funds to counties was a political function and CRA should have consulted widely before coming up with the proposals released on Thursday.

CRA Communication Director George Muruli said recommendations of the CRA on the formulae were made to Parliament on April 24. He said MPs gave their views on the formulae that day.

"After submitting the recommendations to Parliament, CRA also aired the same to the public via the media, in order to comments and participation pursuant to the spirit of the Constitution," said Muruli in a statement. He added: "Recommendations by the CRA are only proposals". However, Article 218(2)(c) of the Constitution provides that Parliament must give explanations for their deviation from the recommendations of the CRA.

The MPs took issue with the proposals saying it institutionalises over concentration of funds in developed counties while denying marginalised areas resources.

"This was not the intention of the Constitution. Kenyans in marginalised areas wanted resources devolved," said Duale, who accused CRA of working for politicians against devolution.

The legislators said the formula gives the parameter of population weight of 60 per cent, which they said favored developed counties.

Meanwhile, Ikolomani MP Bonny Khalwale has blamed Planning Minister Wycliffe Oparanya over the disparities in distribution and sharing of money to the counties.

Khalwale claimed the cash channeled to Busia could not satisfactorily serve the county’s need.

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