• The amount translates to between Sh600,000 to Sh200,000 for each former councillor.
• Nyanza forum for councillor’s chairperson Joseph Ogut termed the offer by the government a drop in the ocean.
Former councillors in Nyanza have rejected the national government's retirement package.
The government has offered to pay all former councillors across the country Sh2.6 billion. This amount translates to between Sh600,000 to Sh200,000 for each former councillor.
But Nyanza forum for councillors chairperson Joseph Ogut termed the offer by the government a drop in the ocean.
Ogut said they had demanded a Sh1.5 million one-off payment and Sh30,000 monthly pension.
“We are shocked to learn that the government plans to give us Sh200,000 one-off payment without any monthly pension. This is unacceptable,” he said.
Earlier this month, Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani announced that the government was not in a position to implement the demands of the councillors.
He said the government could only afford a one-off gratuity in the next financial year due to hard economic times occasioned by Covid-19 pandemic.
Yatani said all former councillors who served more than four terms will be paid each Sh664,000, while those who served less than four terms will each get Sh200,000.
But Ogut said what is being offered is not enough to address the challenges they are facing.
He spoke to the press on Thursday at the Katito centre in Kisumu county, where 30 former councillors converged.
“We have families and we have hospital bills. We left a mark on the development of this nation. Why must we be paid peanuts?” he asked.
Ogut said they will not relent in reminding the government why they need a monthly pension.
Casper Gichana, a former councillor from Kisii, said they were shocked to learn that what they were demanding was reduced.
“We had hopes when the Senate approved a one-off payment of Sh1.5 million per councillor and another monthly stipend, now the hopes are dashed,” he said.
Gichana said the government should show appreciation for the work they did before devolution.
“Look around these counties, some are still using the buildings we put up when we were councillors. They have not built anything yet,” he said.
Gichana said the government is giving a stipend to elderly persons and wondered why they cannot be considered for a monthly pension too as senior citizens.
Councillor Agnes Nyagol from Kisumu East said since 2013, they have been following up on the retirement package and what is being offered is too little.
She appealed to President Uhuru Kenyatta to intervene and help former councillors receive what is commensurate with the work they did in the past.
“Up to where we have reached, it is only President Kenyatta who can help us,” Nyagol said.
Okang Tolo, a former councillor in Kisumu, said he does not understand why the payments are pegged to the next financial year.
“Our MCAs were comfortably paid Sh2 million each to pass the Building Bridges Initiative while we are being tossed around,” Tolo said.
Edited by A.N