•On Monday, Wetang’ula told MPs his office has initiated talks with SRC chairperson Lyn Mengich, talks geared toward restoring the perks.
•He promised the new House that the matter will be concluded before the end of the week.
Members of Parliament will continue pocketing current lucrative allowances that had been proposed for removal by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission.
National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetang'ula is leading talks with the commission, to among other things rescind its earlier decision that sliced key allowances of members of the 13th Parliament.
He said the allowances are crucial for the discharge of MPs’ work as people’s representatives.
On Monday, Wetang’ula told MPs his office has initiated talks with SRC chairperson Lyn Mengich, talks geared toward restoring the perks.
He promised the new House that the matter will be concluded before the end of the week.
“I was having a meeting with SRC on your behalf and we have called them. Before we finish the induction, we will make a few announcements.” Nobody in his right senses will interfere with your car allowances, mortgage, mileage and everything that belong to you Wetang’ula told MPs.
“Obviously we live incrementally we don’t live in reduction, so our engagement with SRC is to remind them that as they go about their constitutional mandate they should be alive to the fact that issues that perks that members have been enjoying in the last several Parliament should not be unnecessarily interfered with.”
Azimio Majority Leader designate Opiyo Wandayi welcomed the ongoing talks between SRC and Parliamentary Service Commission saying it is in the right direction.
“It is encouraging. Although SRC is independent, things work better if we embrace the spirit of dialogue and consultations,” Wandayi who is the Ugunja MP said.
The Lyn Mengich-led commission had abolished sitting allowances for the 13th Parliament, something that has caused a standoff between the Commission and the lawmakers who have demanded that it be reversed.
Mengich is expected to address the lawmakers on Wednesday on the remuneration and benefits of Members of Parliament.
The car grant in the new changes was replaced with a transport facilitation allowance which also directed the MPs to maintain their cars.
The new grant is pegged at Sh7.5 million instead of the initial Sh5 million.
The Salary Commission argued that lawmakers being state officers were receiving higher salaries past their off-pay grade.
Wetang’ula speaking when he officially opened the induction of Members of the National Assembly assured lawmakers that nobody will touch their privileges saying Kenyans are having huge financial expectations from them hence the need for better facilitation.
“If anything changes, it will not be substantial,” he said.
“Expectations from you are huge including being a local ATM. My leadership will ensure you are facilitated to meet some of these expectations. ”
National Assembly Deputy Speaker Gladys Boss and acting Clerk Serah Kioko were present during the induction.
The forum which involves taking the legislators through the operations and procedures of the House is geared towards equipping them with tools to effectively execute their mandate.
Kioko said the program will give Members exposure to the working of a Member of the National Assembly.
“These preliminary sessions will enable you to have a general overview of your role as a Member of Parliament and how this plays out in your interactions while in the House, Committees as well as with other arms of government and the public,” she said.