Members of County Assemblies (MCAs) took home an average Sh80,177 in monthly sitting allowances in the nine months to March 2020, the highest in three years.
Data from the Controller of Budget (CoB) shows that each the lawmakers took home Sh80,177 on average a month for attending assembly meetings, this is a new high after a few years of the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) cut perks and benefits for State officers.
Homa Bay and Tana River county assemblies reported a higher expenditure on sitting allowance than the recommended monthly ceiling of Sh124,800 by the SRC.
Kakamega, Kisii, Nyamira, and Busia led the allowances gravy train in the review period, with each MCA pocketing Sh123,413, Sh122,348, Sh121,775 and Sh121, 487 monthly respectively.
Wajir, Kajiado, and Samburu MCAs received the least from meetings at Sh35,945, Sh25,850, and Sh20,317 a month respectively.
The MCAs earned an average Sh84,875 in the financial year ending june 2017, after the perks were cut, the ward representatives earned an average of Sh33,136 in the year to June 2018 and Sh76,995 in 2019.
The recent spike is after an order from the High Court in 2018 that reinstated the benefits. The SRC was forced to return the cap on sitting allowances to Sh124,800 monthly from Sh80,000.
This is even as Kenyans continue to complain about the strain of politicians’ greed for hefty allowances on the failing economy. While the pandemic continues to bite, the MCAs’ sitting allowances resumed their upward trajectory, causing concern that the perks were consuming county government revenues.
It is evident the allowances are eating deep into the counties budgets forcing the 47 counties to forego some basic services such as water, health, and roads due to lack of funds.
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