NYERI, Kenya, May 1 – Nyeri governor Mutahi Kahiga has protested the proposed financial budgetary deduction by the National Treasury saying the county will not be able to pay contractors and suppliers in this financial year.
The Governor was responding to the Treasury’s move to reduce all counties’ allocation by Sh46 billion to mitigate the effects of COVID-19, with Nyeri is expected to receive Sh5,095,650,000 in financial year 2020/21 against Sh5,412,150,000 received in financial year 2019/2020 .
Treasury, in a Kenya gazette supplement number 45 dated 17 April 2020 emanating from the Senate proposed changes in county allocation of an equitable share of the revenue.
Kahiga said that this being the last quarter of the year, monies in the development vote have been committed to various projects, adding that slashing the allocation will only put him into a collision with contractors and suppliers.
The county, just like other counties has had its revenue streams affected, dealing blows to its Sh1 billion revenue target for the financial year.
Badly affected are market fees, bars, hotels and restaurant fees, bus park fees, and land rates which the Governor said are local sources that generate the bulk of the said revenue.
“From bars alone, we normally collect over Sh45 million through the issuance of licenses. But with Coronavirus, i am foreseeing a situation where hitting the Sh. 700million mark may be impossible,” he said.
Kahiga proposed that the national government review its mega projects and reschedule them instead of reducing budgetary allocations to counties.
He further said that the downward review of counties budgets may be tenable if only they are receiving adequate material and financial support from the national government to combat Covid 19.
“It is disheartening that the national government has only given us financial and material support of not more than Sh95 000 yet they are planning to reduce our budgetary allocation, “he said.
Kahiga wondered how he will be able to run quarantine centers, provide sanitizers and personal protective equipment to its health workers with a strained budget.