, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 5 – Counties are set to receive an extra Sh20 billion in county allocation if a proposal by the Cabinet is approved by Parliament.
A Cabinet meeting chaired by President Uhuru Kenyatta Thursday resolved to increase county allocations from the initial Sh228 billion to Sh248 billion on equitable share basis in a bid to empower counties to be able to carry out their functions.
Counties are also set to benefit from Sh4.6 billion in conditional grants towards maternal health care, Sh4.5 billion to support level five hospitals and Sh3.3 billion for road maintenance.
However, the main focus for resource allocation as decided by the Cabinet will be on infrastructure development, human capital development which includes education, environment and the youth.
The Budget Policy Paper which outlines the spending by counties also took note of the incomplete projects arising from the previous financial year and the fact there was need for ‘serious’ strategic interventions in national security and the environment dockets, these heightened by the spate of attacks that rocked the country in the past year, which put the government in bad light.
The meeting also resolved to create an advisory board which will determine how the equalization fund will be allocated to ensure counties that are marginalized are catered for, with Sh6 billion set aside for priority projects.
The equalization fund is also meant boost other initiatives by the government in its bid to achieve Vision 2030.
The Cabinet also set on fast tracking the compensation of those displaced or affected by the LAPSSET project to guarantee payment by the end of this month, so that construction of the multi-billion shillings project can continue.
The construction of the first three berths has already commenced despite being stalled by the delay in compensating the victims.
The Cabinet noted and appreciated the grant by the International Monetary Fund which helped cushion the country against changes in the financial sector while expressing confidence that in the course of the year, inflation would drop to 5 percent from 5.5 percent.
The proposals by Cabinet await approval by Parliament which is set to resume sittings from recess next Tuesday.