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EDITORIAL

MPs should respect SRC and skip new allowances

In Summary

• Mombasa MPs say constituents are happy for them to get bigger salaries because they share the money.

• New housing and overnight allowances total Sh384,000 per month.

SRC chairperson Lyn Cherop Mengich during a press conference on MPs house allowances on May 15,2019.
SRC chairperson Lyn Cherop Mengich during a press conference on MPs house allowances on May 15,2019.
Image: ENOS TECHE

Mombasa MPs have declared at a funeral fundraising that they deserve more money (see P25).

They say they share their money with constituents and are paid less than the private sector.

Last week MPs passed a motion to get a housing allowance and overnight allowance when Parliament is sitting, totalling around Sh384,000 per month. These MPs are in dreamland. Very people earn as much as their housing allowance, let alone their total salary.

The MPs argue that their constituents do not object to their pay rise because they share their salaries with them. Yet it is impossible to share their allowances with all their constituents. That's why MPs get a Constituency Development Fund.

And in any case, some MPs rarely go back to their constituencies and don't share anything.

Whether or not MPs give out money is their business. Some MPs do and some don't. It is a personal choice.

There is an independent constitutional body that determines pay for all state officers. MPs don't like that and they are doing everything possible to undermine the SRC. But if they don't respect the SRC, who will?

Quote of the day: "By gnawing through a dike, even a rat may drown a nation."

Edmund Burke
The  Irish-English philosopher died onJuly 9, 1797