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Audit and Recover Illegal Sitting Allowances to MCA’s: #RudishaMaliYangu

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The Annual County Governments Budget Implementation Review Reports for the financial year 2014/2015 published between November 2014 and August 2015, by the Office of the Controller of Budget indicates that in some counties, the Members of the County Assembly (MCA) received more than the maximum average sitting allowance.

The Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) set a maximum average monthly sitting allowance of Ksh.124,800 for a Member of the County Assembly (MCA’s) through Gazette Notice no.2885 on 28th February 2013.

The payment of allowances above the set amount occurred as the country is grappling with a high public wage bill and a cash crisis that has affected disbursement of funds at the county and national levels.

Transparency International Kenya has been advocating for the review of allowances in the public service as a key strategy to reduce the wage bill. Majority of public servants, particularly those at senior levels, are paid more in allowances than salaries.

We call on the public to support the #RudishaMaliYangu Campaign to press for:

  1. A special audit by Office of the Auditor General to ascertain validity of the expenditure in relation to the MCAs’ sitting allowances.
  2. Parliament to take administrative measures; order the recovery of the excess (and illegal) amounts paid to individual MCAs as allowances.
  3. The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to conduct investigations and open corruption and economic crime cases against accounting officers that granted unauthorized payments in the form of excess allowances, and for going against Article 226 of the Constitution of Kenya on ‘Accounts and Audit of Public Entities’. The accounting officers should therefore face action as per the Constitution (Article 226 (5)) stating that: “If a holder of a public office, including a political office, directs or approves the use of public funds contrary to law or instructions, the person is liable for any loss arising from that use and shall make good the loss, whether the person remains the holder of the office or not.”
  4. The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to conduct investigations and open corruption and economic crime cases against individual MCAs as per the offences listed under the Anti-Corruption and Economic Crimes Act, 2003.
  5. The Commission of Administrative Justice to provide an advisory opinion and recommendations on how to improve accountability in the administration of allowances paid to public and state officers.

It is important that the public presses for action against any illegal payment of allowances.

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