Pro-Ruto senators reject push to increase counties share to Sh407b

Voting along partisan lines saw Kenya Kwanza Alliance's senators vote to reject the increment proposed by the Commission for Revenue Allocation, with opposition senators futilely voting in its favour.

The Sh385 billion for the Financial Year 2023/24 is an increment from the current Sh370 billion. The sum entitled to the county governments pales in comparison to the Sh2.17 trillion the national government is to receive.

Treasury said the Sh385 billion figure is 24.5 per cent of the last audited and approved accounts for the 2019/20 Financial Year, an amount totalling Sh1.57 trillion.

Debate on the subject has raged for days, as majority and minority senators clashed over the figure that counties should receive in the next financial year.

The argument from Kenya Kwanza senators has been that the country's financial situation does not allow the government to allocate Sh407 billion to the counties.

At a press briefing at Parliament's media centre, Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya senators slammed their counterparts for rejecting the amendment to DORB.

Nairobi Senator Edwin Sifuna termed the move "a betrayal" to Kenyans, equating it to an assault on devolution.

"The money sent to the national government should have been sent to the county governments to employ health workers who came before the Senate crying to be employed," said the ODM secretary-general.

"We want the world to know you have been betrayed in the Senate. They have decided to kill devolution in Senate," he added.

Senate Minority Whip Ledama ole Kina argued that their counterparts had passed the Bill for political expediency. "Instead of defending counties, the 22 senators have decided to support the Kenya Kwanza administration in retaining money at the national government," he said.

"It is a dark day for devolution. Kenya Kwanza senators have conspired to deny funds to counties," said Senate Deputy Minority Leader Enoch Wambua.