Taxpayers cost of staff attached to former presidents Mwai Kibaki and Daniel arap Moi has for the first time crossed the Sh100 million mark.
The Treasury will allocate the retired presidents’ workers Sh117.3 million for salaries and allowances in the year starting July, up from the current Sh95 million — reflecting a 24.8 percent growth.
The pay to the aides will push their office budget to Sh243 million, highlighting the taxpayer burden of keeping the two happy in retirement given they also receive pension of Sh74 million per annum.
The law entitles them to two personal assistants, four secretaries, four messengers, four drivers, house keepers, home cleaners and bodyguards, bringing the total staff count to 34 office workers excluding security guards who should be at least six.
Taxpayers also cater for workers in Mr Kibaki’s Nairobi office that was bought at Sh250 million three years ago, and Mr Moi’s office at Kabarnet Gardens, off Ngong Road.
The package has also come under heavy criticism on grounds that the retired presidents left office as rich men with property worth billions of shillings and vast business interests.
Mr Kibaki stepped down from the presidency in 2013 after serving two five-year terms while Mr Moi retired in 2002 having been in power for 24 years.
Running costs for Mr Kibaki’s office will rise to Sh108.9 million in the year starting July, from the current Sh85 million while that of Mr Moi will increase to Sh79.3 million from Sh75 million.
Paying staff takes the largest chunk of the office running costs. Mr Kibaki’s staff costs of Sh72.8 million will consume 67 percent of the budget.
Besides the office budget that is managed by State House, the two retired presidents receive addition benefits from the pensions department
Among other things, are fleet of four cars, which include two limousines, a fuel allowance equivalent to 15 percent of the monthly salary paid to the sitting president, an entertainment budget, petrol as well as house allowance.
The pension and these benefits saw the cash wired to their accounts at Sh74 million. If awarded equally their package for the current year assures each a monthly payout of Sh3 million — an amount that is more than twice President Uhuru Kenyatta’s official salary of Sh1.2 million.
The State also pays for their medical care and that of their families, and meets the retired president’s travel costs inside Kenya and abroad.