Politics and policy
New law seeks audit of military finances
Posted Sunday, July 15 2012 at 18:22
The financial accounts of the Kenya Defence Forces will for the first time be subject to auditing if Parliament passes a new Bill into law.
The Constitutional Implementation Committee (CIC) has introduced a new part to the Kenya Defence Forces Bill 2012 that will require the forces, like other State organs, to annually submit their financial reports to the President and Parliament.
Additionally, the Bill requires KDF to subject its annual financial accounts to auditing in accordance with Articles 226 and 229 of the Constitution and relevant public finance management and audit legislation.
CIC, in aligning the Bill to the letter and spirit of the Constitution, has introduced a new Part XX that provides for financial matters.
Article 226 of the Constitution requires Parliament to enact legislation that will guide the accounts and procedures of auditing public entities in order to secure efficient and transparent fiscal management.
“The accounting officer of a national public entity is accountable to the national assembly for its financial management and the accounting officer of a county public entity is accountable to the county assembly for its financial management,” reads Section 226 (2) of the Constitution.
The military and the national spy agency National Security Intelligence Service (NSIS) budgets have never been audited since their spending has always been deemed secret as a matter of national security.
The Constitution requires the security organs to be subject to audit by a special parliamentary committee .
The Bill also provides for transparency and meritocracy in the appointment of the command of the Kenya Defence Forces — the Chief of the Kenya Defence Forces, Deputy Chief of the Kenya Defence Forces or the three Service Commanders.
The Bill requires the Defence Council to develop the criteria for recruitment, promotion and transfers of members of the forces in consultation with the Public Service Commission.
The Bill also introduces an internal grievance mechanism within the defense forces, through the establishment of an Inspectorate of the Defence Forces to be headed by the Chief of the Inspectorate.
CIC has approved the new strengthened Bill that incorporates views of Kenyans, who submitted memoranda between June 12 and 15.
The Bill now awaits publication by the Attorney General before it is presented to Parliament for debate and approval before August 26, the deadline imposed under the Constitution.
CIC has also invited Kenyans to submit views on the Leadership and Integrity Bill that seeks to instill a culture of transparency, accountability and servant leadership among all public servants.
Kenyans have eight days to give proposals on how the State should use funds recovered from corrupt public officers.