NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 31 – A Senate Committee has stepped in to end a two-month impasse between Members of the County Assembly (MCAs) and the Salaries and Remuneration Commission.
Speaking after meeting the two groups, Senate Committee on Devolution chairman Kipchumba Murkomen directed the SRC to submit the full evaluation report which was used to determine the salaries for all public servants to the team by Monday.
“The report which the commission has been unwilling to release citing security concerns, has been the bone of contention with the MCAs claiming that it should be used as a guided to the jobs re-evaluation set to begin next month,” he told a news conference.
“The SRC is ready and committed to complete the re-evaluation of MCAs welfare and remuneration within four weeks so that by December 2 the report should be final.”
The Senate committee also directed County Assembly Speakers Forum chairman Abdi Nuh to convene a governing council meeting on Tuesday to deliberate whether the MCAs will go back to work.
Nuh welcomed the new development saying it will be helpful in trying to end the impasse which started on September 19 after 44 out of the 47 county assemblies adjourned their business indefinitely.
The more than 2,000 representatives want their pay increased from Sh79,200 to Sh257,500 per month.
The County Assembly Speakers want their pay up to Sh512,800 from Sh225,000 per month.
“One of the sticking point has been us getting the report of the previous evaluation before we go for a second re-evaluation, we are happy that the Commission has acceded to the request, that we will get the report by Monday morning,” stated Nuh.
“As to whether members will commit to the re-evaluation is subject to the decision of the Governing forum on Tuesday and I said we will make decisions in the best interest of the nation.”
SRC Chairperson Sarah Serem said she would like to see a speedy conclusion to the crisis viewed a threat to the devolution because most County Assemblies are yet to approve their Supplementary Budgets after the Controller of Budget rejected the Finance Bill for being extravagant.
“For as, as SRC the most important thing we wanted was dialogue because we realized it is not something that can be taken lightly, we agree to what has been said by the committee chairman and we want to confirm that we are ready to move forward.”
The two sides had earlier traded accusations with Nuh accusing the SRC of being dishonest by failing to live up to their past agreements, while Serem equally accused the County Speakers of constantly moving the posts and stalling the re-evaluation process.