Kajiado County has frozen the employment of new employees for a period of two years.
Speaking during the opening of the first session of the third Kajiado County Assembly, Governor Joseph ole Lenku noted that the troublesome wage bill was one of the biggest challenges for the county government.
“The aggregate wage bill over the last five years has surged to 43.4 percent. This situation is no longer tenable. It has been noted that hiring of new staff and promotions have been out of line with budget allocations,” Ole Lenku said.
He said the unplanned and unregulated promotions and re-designation of staff have consequently exerted a lot of pressure on the county’s wage bill.
Lenku revealed that the last head count of the county staff was done 8 years ago and there was a need to account for every staff in the payroll and to also ensure that their jobs are aligned with their competencies.
The governor said that time has come for painful decisions to be made to tame the run-away wage bill.
“Among other remedial actions, I direct that all recruitment of new employees, renewal of expired contracts, and replacement of retired staff or those exiting service from other natural attritions be frozen for a period of two years,” said Lenku
The governor also revoked any irregular promotion and grade awards with immediate effect and ordered action to be taken against the responsible officers.
He also directed the County Public Service Board to only approve and implement the establishment of new public service positions after getting confirmation of the availability of budgetary provisions from the county treasury in concurrence with the public service department.
The board is also to urgently undertake regularization of casuals’ engagement and where need be, to release those whose services have been either outsourced or whose adequate staff have already been employed to handle those activities.
Governor Lenku further directed all chief officers to be accounting officers. The Chief Officers are to strictly ensure that personal emoluments of their respective departments, staff promotions, and salary increments are met within the budgetary allocations and to certify the correctness of their departmental payroll by the end of every month.
The County Public Finance Management Act and Regulations (2015) section 25. (1) sets expenditure on wages and benefits for employees at not more than 35 percent of the total revenue.
By Diana Meneto