- He said such practices ought to stop as the money can be channeled to more important things.
- He described it as nonsensical when a summit is established in an African country but the venue is taken to Dubai.
Kisii Senator Richard Onyonka on Tuesday slammed the misuse of government funds on terming them as non-essential foreign trips.
During an interview with Citizen TV, he said such practices ought to stop as the money can be channeled to more important things.
"This practice of using public funds as if it were our personal kitty, where government officials think they can travel to Dubai just for a weekend coffee, should come to an end," Onyonka stated.
He described it as nonsensical when a summit is established in an African country but the venue is taken to Dubai.
"Let us understand that we must be prudent, and there are no free holidays or free cars for carrying girlfriends and relatives on government trips," Onyonka said.
Onyonka pointed out that that most leaders have never been to most regions in the country, let alone a county next to them but still use a lot of money to travel abroad.
"Why are they taking all the MCAs and Members of Parliament on trips to Dubai and the USA for three weeks, paying them Sh2.6 million, when our hospitals lack medicines and our Early Childhood Development (ECD) teachers haven't been paid?" Onyonka questioned.
He estimated that the amount of money being wasted on such trips was close to Sh42 billion shillings per year, suggesting that these funds could be better utilized to compensate health workers and ECD teachers.
"Tax rates are increasing, we are collecting revenue and we are overborrowing. We have exceeded every spending limit that we should be maintaining and controlling, all the while spending public money on international travel when we should be exploring our own country," Onyonka said.
On Monday, the government suspended foreign travel in five categories for government officials.
In a statement, Head of Public Service Felix Koskei said the constitution demands prudent and responsible utilisation of public money.
He said it is a principle that remains the guiding anchor of the government's current fiscal consolidation and monetary policy strategies.
The suspended categories include benchmarking and study visits, training and related capacity-building Initiatives, research, academic meetings and Symposia.
Others are conferences and meetings of general participation, side events, showcase events and exhibitions and caucus and association meetings and events.
He said the outcome of the interventions has been the reduction of the resource envelope available to undertake the wide-ranging activities that have been planned in pursuit of respective governmental mandates at both the National and County levels.