NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 7 – The Devolution Ministry is mulling extending the term of office of the Transition Authority by an extra one year due to what it terms as a heavy work load.
Speaking during a press conference on Thursday, Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri pointed out that a lot of work still needs to be done before the expiry of TA’s term in March and expressed his commitment in ensuring that devolution succeeds.
He stated that his office will convene in two weeks time to discuss the issue and stressed the need for both the National Assembly and the Senate to agree on the matter.
“As the Cabinet Secretary in charge of Devolution, I am convinced that based on the report of the workload, there is need for such an extension of term. However, the mandate for such an extension lies with the constitutional institutions which include the Senate and the National Assembly,” he said.
He explained that the law did not foresee the hurdles that would come up in the process.
“It is clear that the Constitution did not envisage the heavy workload that the TA has had to contend with. It is estimated that 65 percent of the work is done. However, important core functions are pending,” he explained.
“These include assets and liabilities auditing and transfer, rationalization of human transfer between the two levels of government, establishment of the counties pensions and declaration of the county governments as public service,” he said.
“I wish to point out that the Intergovernmental Relations Committee was expected to take over residual functions. I am persuaded that what remains to be done is co-work rather than residual and that the core existence of the two bodies will not be in conflict.”
While stating that they had asked for an extension of three years, TA Chairman Kinuthia wa Mwangi indicated that all stakeholders need to come together to ensure that it completes its work within the given time.
“We see disaster if we just left now with only some work half way done not because of our own fault but because of the circumstances of the day and because of the environment. We hope and believe that other stakeholders will support the Cabinet Secretary’s stand and agree to extend this term so that we can complete this for the sake of Kenya,” he stressed.
“We shall comply with the extension that we shall be given but it is also conditional upon the support that we shall get from all the stakeholders because if you give a shorter term, it will require that extraordinary means be taken to finish our mandate and I am sure that the CVS is equal to the task.”