Nairobi take over renews National Assembly, Senate supremacy battle

Wednesday, April 15th, 2020 15:33 |
Parliament in session. Photo/PD/SAMUEL KARIUKI

A stage has been set for a clash between the Senate and National Assembly over the amount of money to be allocated to Nairobi City County government.

This after members of the National Assembly appropriated shareable revenue of Nairobi City to be managed by the National Treasury after Governor Mike Sonko surrendered some key functions to President Uhuru Kenyatta led administration.

The Division of Revenue Bill, which divides allocation between the national and county governments, has remained a contentious issue between the two Houses, often resulting in mediation.

Last year, counties were for some months sent on cash crunch and had to be sustained under emergency secondary provisions after the two Houses failed to agree even at the mediation, resulting in loss of the Bill.

On Tuesday, Senators passed the Division of Revenue Bill (DORA) 2020 from the National Assembly albeit with amendments, triggering a mediation.

The Senate rejected the retention of some Sh15.9 billion equitable share for Nairobi City in the National government for expenditure by the newly created Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS).

On their part, the National Assembly had reserved the entire amount for the implementation of the four county functions transferred to the national government.

“The equitable share for Nairobi City County should therefore be set aside and arrangements put in place to ensure that the resources necessary for the performance of the functions are transferred pursuant to Article 187 (2) of the Constitution,” reads the Bill from the National Assembly.

On February 25th, Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko signed away four critical county functions to the National government in a ceremony preceded by President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House.

Under the agreement, the national government will take over County Health services, County Transport services, County Public Works, Utilities and Ancillary services and County Government Planning and Development functions.

The Dora Bill is a crucial piece of legislation that divides revenues generated nationally between the National and County governments.

This year, it has allocated Sh1.59 trillion to the National Government while Sh316.5 billion has been set aside for the devolved units in the next financial year starting July 1, 2020.

Traditionally, Nairobi City County has been receiving the lion’s share of the shareable revenue and this year is not any different, city hall has been allocated Sh15.9 billion.

The 47 counties have been allocated conditional grants from the National Government amounting to Sh13.7 billion.

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