APPROPRIATION BILL

l want a favourable budget, Sonko defends refusal to sign bill

Says Assembly should review allocations to education, disaster, inspectorate departs.

In Summary

• The governor clarified that he is not against development, but wants the budget process to be legitimate and not a punitive exercise targeting his administration.

• The Governor called on the County Assembly to review allocations to the Education, Disaster, Inspectorate and Sports departments.

Nairobi governor Mike Sonko when he attended a Church service in Kayole.
Nairobi governor Mike Sonko when he attended a Church service in Kayole.
Image: GPS

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has said his refusal to sign the 2020/2021 Appropriation Bill is purely based on law.

The governor clarified that he is not against development, but wants the budget process to be legitimate and not a punitive exercise targeting his administration.

The Governor called on the County Assembly to review allocations to the Education, Disaster, Inspectorate and Sports departments.

He questioned why the functions still being run by the County Government had their monies slashed against the already laid plans in the County Fiscal Strategy Paper for the 2020/21 financial year.

He wondered why the initial budget prepared with the input of the Finance department was ignored and last-minute changes made to it.

"The MCAs, through the Finance Budget and Appropriation Committee, had made a good document which we had all agreed on but unfortunately some people came in with their own changes," Sonko said.

He revealed that several sectors under his office have lost Sh1 billion.

Another Sh500 million was slashed from the Education department while allocations for Sports was tampered with as well.

"We will not be able to build more stadiums, more vocational training centres and our people will be affected," Sonko said.

He called on the Assembly to consider the memorandum he sent to them with an open mind.

On the ongoing demolitions across the city, he said the government is right to undertake development programs but called for sobriety and soberness when evicting people.

He underlined the need to compensate and move people in a dignified manner without leaving them with no place to call home.

"The law that allows the government to move people is the same law that calls for protection of human rights and demands that we compensate them," Sonko said.

He reiterated that he has immense respect for President Uhuru Kenyatta and the NMS but called for respect to the rule of law.

The Public Finance Management (PFM) Act stipulates that from the financial year 2014/15 onwards counties should prepare their budgets in a program-based format.

The approved Program-Based Budget (PBB) is a critical document when read together with county budget implementation reports, citizens can track budget implementation against approved expenditure during the course of the year.

PBBs also give the public an opportunity to see how the county assembly amended the proposed budget during the approval process.

PBBs also provide details on approved spending within sectors, giving programs and subprograms spending with their objectives as well as spending on staffing and the purchase of goods and services.

This spending may change within the year if the need for a supplementary budget arises.

The PFM Act sets the Annual Development Plan (ADP) as the document that anchors county annual budgets.

In a sense, the ADP is a one-year extract of the five-year County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP) that describes how the county government is responding to current and emerging economic issues.

The governor was speaking after attending a church service in Kayole where he was accompanied by area MCA Nicholas Okumu, several MCAs, sub-county administration and county officials.

The governor added that the county will construct a state-of-the-art ECD centre after he successfully repossessed land from grabbers.

“We will build a nice ECD centre for our future leaders. We must create a good environment for our future leaders. I will ensure we erect a good wall in this church the grabbers have no mercy even to church belonging,” he added.

The governor later addressed a gathering at Soweto in Kayole where he said that his administration will work day and night to ensure all Nairobians live a good life.

“After meeting my executive members next week i'll make sure that they start going to the ground and address problems affecting our people,” the governor added.