, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 18 – The Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution (CIC) has expressed concern over the manner in which national government functions are being transferred to County governments saying it is rushed and risks paralysing devolution.
In an advisory posted on the Commission’s website, CIC said the process of transferring functions to the County governments must be restructured to comply with the laid down procedures.
The Commission urged the Senate to ensure that the transfer process was conducted in accordance with the law and with the requisite financial support to ensure that it was seamless.
“In its monitoring role CIC is concerned and has expressed its concern to all relevant agencies on the hurried and sometimes ad hoc manner in which the process is being carried out so far,” argued the CIC.
The Commission also cautioned the national government against transferring functions to Counties that are unable to discharge them noting that public officers who facilitated such a transfer would be held liable.
According to the CIC, County governments that get functions which they cannot discharge risk being suspended and will subsequently paralyse devolution.
“The Transition to Devolved Government Act 2012 provides the criteria to be met before functions are to be transferred from the national government level to a county government level, to ensure that the process is seamless, effective and lawful,” read part of the advisory.
The CIC also observed that Section 15 of the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution required a phased transfer of functions.
In April, the Transition Authority issued a similar warning to both Count and National governments to ensure that the necessary infrastructure was already in place before functions are transferred.
“If you take up a function that you cannot perform because you do not have the capacity, then we there is a danger. You would rather leave it with the national government and when you are ready you take it up,” cautioned Transition Chairman Kinuthia Wamwangi at the time.
The CIC further explained that the Constitution provided a transition period that gave County Governments the space to plan and develop the required structures before functions are transferred to them.
“Section 15 of the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution requires legislation that would make provision for the phased transfer of functions from the national government to the county government, over a period of three years, from the date of the first general elections under the Constitution,” read part of the CIC statement.