‘Buying voters tea’ not a reason to add allowances for MPs

If MPs get perks for helping people who know them, so should every person who has a cousin.

In Summary

•Footing constituents funerals not reason to get unbelievable amounts of house allowance. 

•Handouts a euphemism for bribery. 

Illustration of a handout
KENYANS BUY TEA ALSO: Illustration of a handout
Image: FILE

In explaining why they have an insatiable desire for hefty allowances, some MPs, and their backers like Cotu secretary general Francis Atwoli, have without batting an eyelid, stated that their constituents are always at their doorsteps seeking handouts and food.

They say they pay school fees, foot funeral costs and hospital bills, and want their perks to be at per with other senior government officials. One needs not to step into an economics class to decipher that what they are doing is an affront on the electorate and abuse of powers bestowed upon them by the very people they claim to represent.

If impoverished masses seeking help from them is the reason they are ever on a pay hike spree, then every employed person in this country would be using that as a basis to demand a salary rise from their employers, for Kenyans too, have relatives and friends who occasionally ask them for help.

The masses also pay school fees, buy food and defray hospital costs for their friends and relatives, yet they seldom use that to increase prices of commodities in their business premises.

Buying of tea or alcohol to people who know you is not exclusive to politicians. If people are living on handouts, then the solution lies not in overburdening the taxpayer but in introducing legislation and policies that can turn around the economy people can feel the trickle-down effect of an improved economy in terms of more jobs, growth of businesses and improved health care and infrastructure.

The ludicrous handouts are used by MPs as a euphemism for bribery, which is illegal, and the culpable should face the law, not be allowed to increase their perks.

This disregard of the law and common sense by MPs must be rejected

Freelance Journalist and Writer