Kenya: Governors Reject Tissue Transplant Authority

Nairobi — Council of Governors have rejected Tissue Transplant Authority, 2 other bodies set up under former president Uhuru Kenyatta’s regime and called for an audit to undo anti-devolution laws.

In a meeting that saw discussion of pertinent issues affecting county governments, the council noted the establishment of the Kenya National Public Health Institute Order of 2022, National Syndemic Diseases Control Authority and Kenya Tissue and Transplant Authority without consultation with the counties.

The Council now calls for the audit of all laws that had been passed before the inception of devolution and thereafter in a move to align a devolved system of governance.

“We note with utmost concern that the following Authorities were established by the Ministry of Health through executive orders issued by the Former President a few months preceding the August 9th General Elections: The Kenya National Public Health Institute Order of 2022, National Syndemic Diseases Control Authority and Kenya Tissue and Transplant Authority,” said Anne Waiguru, chairperson of the Council of Governors.

“This continues to be a trend whereby the National Government creates institutions to undertake devolved functions. The Council calls for the audit of all laws that had been passed before the inception of devolution in 2013 and also post-2013- with a bid to align those to the devolved system of governance,” Waiguru added.

The Council of Governors, among other things, has also accused the office of controller of budget for contributing to the amalgamation of the county government pending bill.

The council noted that the controller of budget is purporting to exercise the functions of the Auditor General adding that they will seek an audience with the Executive of the National Government to address the recurring issue of pending bills.

“It is unfortunate that the Office of the Controller of Budget continues to contribute to the amalgamation of the pending bills by purporting to exercise the functions of the Auditor General. We therefore call upon the Controller of Budget to stop being a bottleneck to this critical process and allow room for the Counties to implement their budgets,” said Anne Waiguru, chairperson of the Council of Governors.

The chairperson of the CoG, Waiguru, appealed to the senate to advocate for recommendations on proposed revenue sharing between the national government and the county government.

Some of the recommendations include a proposed 15 percent increase of the projected revenue and a minimum of Ksh425 billion to counties in the coming financial year.

“We note that CRA has recommended Kshs.407 billion be allocated to Counties in the FY 2023/24 which is a 10% increase from the current Kshs.370 billion on the Vertical Sharing of Revenue. In line with this, the Council proposes a 15% increase of the projected revenue growth in the FY 2023/24 and hence allocate a minimum of Kshs.425 billion to Counties. Additionally, on the Road Maintenance Levy Fund (RMLF) the Council recommends that this be converted back to a conditional grant in order to ring-fence it. We appeal to the Senate to advocate for the recommendations.”

Among other issues that the council discussed include delayed disbursement of the county equitable share reiterating that the total amount the central government owes county government is Ksh29.6 billion for October and Ksh31.45 billion for November 2022 allocations.

“Our attention is drawn to the trajectory by the National Treasury which has been using the criteria of using absorption rate as a basis of cash disbursement to counties. We reject this proposal in toto as it goes against Article 219 of the Constitution and Section 17 (6) of the PFM Act, 2012. Currently, the 47 County Governments are owed Kshs.29.6 billion for October and Kshs.31.45 billion for November 2022 allocations. We therefore call upon the National Treasury to expedite the disbursement of the monies owed to ensure that service delivery in the Counties.” read part of a statement from the council of governors meeting on Monday.

The council further noted the criteria used by the controller of budget to approve requisitions of revenue allocation to the counties is misleading.

“It is imperative to note that the balances in the County Revenue Funds (CRFs) are not as a result of under absorption by Counties but due to delays by the Controller of Budget to approve requisitions which spans over 2 weeks. This criteria is therefore misleading and unjustified.”

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