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Editorials

EDITORIAL: Use county funds prudently

Governors during a past Council of Governors (CoG) meeting
Governors during a past Council of Governors (CoG) meeting. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

As senators fight for more money to be distributed to the 47 counties, there is worrying silence on how to ensure prudent use of the resources.

Kirinyaga Senator Charles Kabiru, the chair of the Finance and Budget Committee, has proposed that counties receive no less than Sh350 billion each financial year going forward.

This will be a significant rise from the Sh316.5 billion allocated to the devolved governments this years. The proposal may be justified but the counties’ track record in spending and managing the hundreds of billions of shillings they have received since their establishment in 2013 leaves a lot to be desired.

Outright theft of funds, overspending on indulgences like foreign travel and white elephant projects have been well documented. Controller of Budget reports show that counties spend only 40 percent of their funds on development projects.

Governors, members of the county assemblies and executive appointees have all partaken in this betrayal of taxpayers and voters with little accountability.

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Most of the graft cases are stuck in the court process, with the accused continuing to hold on to their positions.

The Senate itself has failed to hold some governors accountable even after MCAs raised the red flag, with their inertia sometimes informed by politics of the day.

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