MCAs ordered to return illegally received allowance
30 April 2015, 16:17
Bungoma - Members of the Bungoma County Assembly have been ordered to repay allowance they received illegally.
According to letters from the office of the auditor general and the salaries and remuneration commission, the MCAs had been receiving sitting allowances for sittings they had not participated in, dubbed “automatic allowance”.
The office of the auditor general had questioned how all the MCAs had never missed a single meeting even while abroad on official duties.
According to records seen by the press, all the 64 had never missed a single meeting.
Speaking Wednesda, speaker John Makali acknowledged receiving the two letters but refused to divulge how much money the MCAs were required to return.
“We don’t want to make any communication until we convene a special meeting with our members,” he said.
The speaker said that he had already convened a special session with the MCAs to amicably iron out the issue.
The MCAs receive an allowance of KES 3 900 for every sitting.
The revelation comes as the Bungoma County Assembly faces a major financial crisis after being forced to scale down some of its activities.
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Bungoma Speaker, John Makali, stated that they have been forced to put in place austerity measures in order to survive till the end of the Financial Year.
He said that the placement of budget ceilings by the Controller of Budget had adversely affected most of the operations of the Assembly.
He stated that the Assembly had an initial budget estimate of about KES 800 million but were informed that the ceiling was placed at about KES 450 million, which is half.
Makali said that the salaries at the Assembly consumed about KES 350 million annually, leaving very little for operations.
"When we saw the ceilings placed, we were surprised as it would leave us with KES 100 million to operate with," he stated.
Makali added that they had a session with the Commission on Revenue Allocation who promised them that they would increase the ceilings to about KES 617 million.
He said that Commission should have set a minimum of 10 percent of the county budget.
"If the Assembly is given about 10 percent of the County allocatio,n then we would have about KES 870 million and we would operate comfortably," said the Speaker.
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