If you are a resident of Nakuru County, you might have come across this post. The post that was widely shared by staff and bloggers linked to the Nakuru County Government was meant to sanitize the fact that the County had spent zero shillings on development.
Today (Friday 18th May, 2018) Page 10.
Controller of Budget absolves Nakuru County from Blame.
According to Controller of Budget half year report FY 2017/18 has singled out 14 counties Nakuru included as Counties which did not incur any expenditure on development in the first half of this financial year.
The Controller of Budget attributes this to delays in disbursement of monies by the National Treasury which has affected the timely implementation of county programs.
“In the reporting period, the National Treasury did not fully adhere to Disbursement Schedule, which affected execution of budgeted activities” she said.
What the above failed to explain is the fact that within the same period, the County has withdrawn over 3.75 billion from the County Revenue Fund.
According to the County Governments Budget Implementation Review Report released by the Controller of Budget, Nakuru County had received almost 4 billion in the period between July and December 2017.
“During the period under review, the Controller of Budget approved the withdrawal of Kshs3.75 billion from the CRF account, which was 24 percent of the Approved Budget. This amount represented an increase of 30.9 percent from Kshs.5.43 billion approved in a similar period of FY 2016/17. The entire release was for recurrent expenditure,” reads part of the report.
Nakuru County claims no funds received
In the last few months, county operatives have been peddling false claims to the effect that the county has not received any funds from the national government. This despite the fact that the executive has been to several foreign and domestic travels within the same period.
What those peddling the claims have also refused to reveal is that the county has received over 105 million in conditional grants. A total of Kshs. 52,342,196 million has been released for level 5 hospital, Kshs. 161,278,465 for Road maintenance from the fuel levy fund, Kshs. 29,698,860 as a loan from the World Bank for Transforming Health System for Universal Care project and Kshs. 23,433,569 from DANIDA. Unfortunately, it would seem all these went to recurrent expenses and particularly the payment of salaries.
Nakuru County among 14 without Development agenda
In an article on the Business Daily aptly named “Shock as 14 counties spend zero on projects,” Nakuru is named as among the 14 that spent zero shillings on development. The others are Embu, Garissa, Kirinyaga, Kisumu, Meru, Nandi, Nyandarua, Nyeri, Siaya, Taita-Taveta, Tharaka-Nithi, Vihiga, and West Pokot.
Questions now abound as to what use even the conditional grants were used for. Even the loan from the World Bank amounting to almost 30 million cannot be explained in the same period.
As the second half of the 2017/2018 financial year comes to an end, one can only hope that things will change. It is every resident’s prayer that the County will at least put 30% of its allocation to development. Failure to this, Wanjiku will have no option but to raise the red flag.
Nakuru residents were among the top three in revenue payments coming only behind Nairobi and Kiambu. It will be a great disservice to them to be denied development even as they remain among the high taxpayers. Roads in the estates are in a pathetic state, drainages in towns are no less than death traps. The town continues to be congested by matatus that are allocated spaces every other day.
For all the taxes they pay, Nakuru’s Wanjiku deserves far much better.