BY SAM ALFAN.
Speakers of 47 County Assemblies in the Country have today moved to Court seeking orders to Suspend a Circular that was issued by the Controller of Budget that have putting a Ceiling on the Financial Budgetary allocation of the Counties.
The 47 County assemblies through their lawyer professor Tom Ojienda have moved to the high court to challenge the decision by the Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA) to reduce their budgetary allocations.
County assemblies’ claim that the operations of Counties have been paralyzed Members of County Assemblies (MCAs) on Thursday made good their threat to move to court over their 2014/15 budget stalemate with the Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA) and Controller of Budget.
In a suit filed by Speakers of all 47 County Assemblies on behalf of their residents, the MCAs want the Controller of Budget compelled to implement the counties’ budgets for the 2014/15 fiscal year.
The assemblies say that circulars issued in April and July this year limiting their spending are against the spirit of the constitution.
This even as claims continue to emerge that the county assemblies are directing funds to non -developmental activities.
The county assemblies are aggrieved by circulars sent to them by the Commission of Revenue Allocation and Controller of Budget in April and July 2014 directing county assembly speakers to enforce the mandatory ceiling to financial allocations for the financial year 2014/2015.
It is against this background that they appeared before Justice Isaac Lenaola who certified their case as urgent and ordered them to serve the respondents.
The MCAs want the court to quash the directive with Mandera County Speaker Abdi Kadir Sheikh saying that the budgetary ceilings are meant to derail devolution in the country.
According to them the County Assemblies in approving their own budgets are within the law and that CRA and the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) has no mandate to set caps on budgets and allowances.
The MCAs are specifically opposed to the budget restrictions on salaries, allowances, gratuity and mileage.
The budgetary limits were imposed following a report revealing that Members of the County Assemblies had spent 2 billion shillings on activities outside their mandate.
The hearing is set for Friday morning before Justice Isaac Lenaola.