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THIRD GENERATION FORMULA

Speaker defers debate on revenue sharing after Senators disagree

Speaker Ken Lusaka calls for Kamukunji to build consensus among members.

In Summary

•The situation puts the devolved units in an awkward position with the reality of plunging into a full blown cash crisis looming large.  

•The lawmakers were scheduled to discuss a compromised formula proposed by the house Finance and Budget Committee during its sittings on Monday. 

Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka during an interview with the Star in his office at Parliament Buildings, Nairobi, on Monday
Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka during an interview with the Star in his office at Parliament Buildings, Nairobi, on Monday
Image: EZEKIEL AMING'A

Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka was on Tuesday forced to defer debate on the revenue sharing in the new proposed formula.

This is after the Senators failed to agree on the method proposed for sharing with regards to 'losers' and 'gainers' in the proposed law.

The situation now puts the devolved units in an awkward position with the reality of plunging into a full blown cash crisis looming large.  

 

The lawmakers were scheduled to discuss a compromised formula proposed by the house Finance and Budget Committee during its sittings on Monday.

 
 

The proposed formula would have seen 18 counties, mainly less populous and marginalised, lose up to Sh17 billion with 29 others gaining a similar amount.

However, the Star learnt that the House was divided down the middle, forcing the speaker to defer the much anticipated debate.

“The house was supposed to discuss the third basis of sharing of revenue but the report cannot be tabled in its current form,” Lusaka.

Lusaka said there was need to build a consensus before the report is tabled on the floor and ordered a Kamukunji on Monday next week for members to agree on the formula.

“I am therefore giving directions that we have a Kamukunji on Monday so that we are taken through the report to enable us build enough conscious,” Lusaka said as he adjourned the House for recess till July 7.

“After the Kamukunji, it is when I will give further directions on when we will meet to have the report tabled and discussed,” he added.

 

Senators whose counties were set to lose huge cash compared to their previous year’s allocation had vowed to fight tooth and nail to defeat the committee’s proposal.

 
 

“It was going to be fire. Is a technical withdrawal of the report. The troops had mobilised like nobody’s business. The committee must go back to the drawing board and give a report all of us will agree with,” Minority Chief Whip Mutula Kilonzo Jr.

The committee chairman Charles Kibiru (Kirinyaga) said the need for an assurance from the government on how the counties losing the cash will be compensated prompted the speaker to defer the debate.

“The counties gaining are 29 and we only needed 24 to pass the formula. But again, we need to see how to cushion these other counties,” he told the Star.

The senators are expected to adopt the formula to determine how the devolved units will share Sh316.5 billion allocated to them in 2020-21 financial year.

The delay to approve the method has stalled the passage of the County Allocation of Revenue Bill, 2020. The Bill splits the Sh316.5 billion among the 47 counties.

The committee’s formula, dubbed, But the committee’s formula dubbed, ‘Mithika Linturi formula’, gives population a weight of 16 percent, health (20), Agriculture (12), basic share (20), poverty (15), land area (5), urban (4).

Among the biggest losers are Wajir County which is losing Sh2 billion, based on analysis of the Sh314 billion shareable revenues.

Others are Marsabit and Mandera which will each lose up to (Sh1.9 billion), Garissa (Sh1.6 billion), Tana River (Sh1.5 billion), Mombasa (Sh1.6 billion), and Kwale (Sh1 billion)

Narok (Sh981 million), Isiolo (Sh869 million), Kilifi (Sh859 million), Turkana (Sh547 million), Kitui (Sh432 million), Makueni (Sh423 million), Samburu (Sh403 million), Taita Taveta (Sh399 million), Tharaka Nithi (Sh338 million), and Vihiga (Sh239 million).

The biggest the biggest gainers in Nandi County which has earned a Sh1.3 billion of the shareable revenue. Its neighbours Uasin Gishu and Nakuru have also increased their revenue by Sh1.1 each.

The populous Counties of Kiambu and Kakamega has been allocated each Sh1 billion in the new formula.

Trans Nzoia (Sh994 Million), Bungoma (Sh926 Million), Kirinyaga (Sh762Million), Bomet (Sh730 Million), West Pokot (Sh692 Million) and Baringo (Sh663 Million).

Others are Siaya (Sh586 million), Migori (Sh574 Million) and Kericho (Sh556 Million), Busia (Sh559 Million), Machakos (Sh551 Million), Laikipia (Sh523 Million) and Embu (Sh504 Million).