Legislators demand meeting with Finance minister over CDF cash

Thursday, February 11th, 2021 00:00 |
Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani. Photo/PD/File

Members of Parliament (MPs) yesterday demanded to meet National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani over the fate of National Government Constituency Development Fund (NG-CDF) after it emerged that Treasury had only released a paltry Sh9 million out of the Sh137 million set aside for the each of the 290 constituencies.

 In a stormy session yesterday morning, the legislators also demanded that the NG-CDF committee chaired by Kanduyi MP Wafula Wamunyinyi explain to them why the Sh20 billion disbursed to the 290 constituencies in the financial year 2020/21 was used to settle accrued arrears for the last financial years.

 This is after Wamunyi told MPs that Yatani had informed him that due to low performance of revenue in the last financial year as a result of Covid-19 pandemic the National Treasury was unable to release Sh13.7 billion in respect to 2019/20 financial year and thus the current allocation would be used to settle the arrears.

  “This figure adds to the arrears of Sh4.9 billion that had accumulated between financial years 2011/12, to financial years 2014/15. Bringing the total figure to Sh18.7 billion.

The committee resolved that these arrears be factored in the coming supplementary estimates,” said Wamunyinyi.

Defending government

 But immediately he was done, the MPs who ganged up against him said it is unacceptable for Wamunyinyi to defend the government as he was elected the chair of the committee to push members’ interest.

 Led by MPs Maoka Maore (Igembe North), Owen Baya (Kilifi North), Samuel Atandi (Alego Usonga), and Mohammed Dahir (Daadab), the legislators told the government to release the entire Sh41 billion allocated for the financial year 2020/21.

 Maore told his successor Wamunyinyi not to allow the Sh20 billion released for the current financial year to be used to settle past arrears, as this would be illegal.

 “We are facing a very big problem, here, we are only three months away from the next financial year and we have only received Sh9 million out of Sh137 million yet he is saying this money will go towards payments of past arrears, I don’t think the chairman should be polite anymore,” said Maore.

 “If you settle the arrears we are going to create a scandal if you regularize these payments. My committee refused any attempts to do such things,” he said.

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