Well, we are approaching the much touted 100 days since inauguration of the jubilee govt
So far we have had industrial unrests, rising insecurity, rising prices of basic commodities etc
We have also had Ruto commit 100m for a private jet, 100m to renovation on his yet to live in house, 250m for Kibaki to who is retired so as to continue to work.
But lets focus on the county governments. From reports about 160bn is provided for in the national budget for counties. This comes to just under 4bn each if shared equally. Each of the counties have however presented budgets ranging from 8 to 60 bn (I hope we will get the complete budget proposals sometime and publish)
In the county budgets almost across the board, 50% or more in some cases 75% is for salaries, while the remaining goes to perks like entertainment allowances, vehicle operations, housing, and offices. Most of which cannot be considered necessities.
It is very clear, and I had called this out earlier on, that the governors have not really put their minds to the task ahead. It does not help either that the national government appears to be determined to kill the true spirit of devolution by introducing various bottlenecks, chiefly sufficient and timely funding.
It was clear to me that the first half of their (Governor’s) term would be best utilised in establishing and rolling a framework or structure of operations for future governors and county governments. Unfortunately many of these governors are still playing politics and while rolling out budgets for the stomach. Granted there are a few who have come out very strongly with development agenda.
On this thread I hope we can all interrogate the operations of county governments and discuss their strategies, management, challenges, opportunities etc
For some highlights on the County budgets sample these
One interesting fact is that the County government intend to fund the shortfall through aggressive revenue collection. This is a very interesting concept in that they are targeting the very same resources that the national government is targeting which means that either the county governments will force local businesses and income earners to be double taxed, or else either county or national government will earn even less.
The perennial problem with Kenyan leadership is the inability to plan 20 to 50 years and that’s why most of these budgets are ridiculously high in that the leaders want projects with instant results rather than funding projects over a period of time.
Aside from that, the administrative overhead is extremely high.
ActionAid have an interesting report / study here
The World Bank also has a fair amount of documentation on county government issues found here
Clearly there is no shortage of technical information or expertise. What we are faced with is an insincere and unnecessarily secretive government that simply does not know or care to fully implement a fully devolved government
Anyway more on this to follow in due course