, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 1 – A constitutional amendment seeking to place the Sh6 billion Equalization Fund under the management of the constituencies has now been referred to the Senate.
This is after 246 Members of the National Assembly voted in support of the Bill sponsored by the Samburu West MP Lati Lelelit.
Only two MPs of the 248 present in the Chamber voted against it.
“The Ayes have it and therefore the Bill will now be read a third time and thereafter referred to the Senate for consideration,” House Speaker Muturi said after announcing the results of the vote.
MPs from marginalised areas celebrated, as this means they and not their respective Governors will have a say on which projects will get priority.
Before MPs went on recess in August, the amendments were defeated as they were supported by 216 MPs out of the 233 (two thirds of all MPs) required.
Muturi said he had allowed extra time for voting on the Bills in view of the fact that members have just returned from recess.
The fund was established under Article 204 of the Constitution to assist marginalised areas attain the same level of development as the rest of the country.
The money, equivalent to 0.5 percent of total national revenue, is kept by the Treasury and remitted to areas targeted for intervention as determined by the Commission for Revenue Allocation (CRA).
The intervention targets basic services including water, roads, health facilities and electricity.
The fund is a 20-year programme that will be wound up on August 27, 2030. CRA has allocated Sh3.4 billion to 14 counties for the next three years after which a review will be done.