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Elgeyo Marakwet Assembly approves 6.6 billion Budget

The Elgeyo Marakwet County Assembly has approved a Sh. 6.6 billion Budget for the 2021/2022 Financial Year.

The Budget includes Sh4.6 billion from the Commission for Revenue Allocation (CRA) Equitable Share, Sh166 million local revenue, 1.2 billion Roll Over Funds and conditional Grants totaling to Sh702 million.

According to the Budget Committee Chair, John Yator, a total of Sh3.5 billion will be used for Recurrent Expenditure while Sh1.8 billion will go towards Development Expenditure.

The Department of Health got the lion’s share of the Budget of Sh1.7 billion with Sh1.5 billion going to Recurrent Expenditure while Sh193 million will be used for development. The Department of Roads got Sh610 million, Sh113 million (Recurrent) while Sh496 million went to development.

The Assembly turned down the executive proposal to include Sh220 million Recurrent Expenditure from 2021/22 Financial Year into the current Budget as Roll Over Funds.

“However, we approved Sh1.2 billion Roll Over Funds for development from the 2020/21 financial year, but declined to approve the sh220 million from recurrent expenditure until a refund statement is submitted for correct verification of the said amounts,” the chair told the house.

The assembly further declined to allocate sh115 million which included sh45 million for construction of the governor’s official residence, and sh35 million each for the construction of the deputy governor’s and speaker’s residence respectively.

The budget chair told the house that there were no funds for the said project as the executive was targeting to raid the allocations for the ward development projects which had already been approved under the 2021/22 Annual Development Plan (ADP).

The Assembly also failed to approve two Conditional Grants from the World Bank, citing lack of work plans and details of the conditions of the Grants.

The two were a sh47 million World Bank emergency locust response project and the World Bank Kenya informal settlement improvement project II worth sh50 million.

“We failed to approve the two following a circular by the Controller of Budget that we should not Budget for an item that does not have a work plan. We also failed to understand why the County Executive Member for Finance was yet to have a work plan yet they received the funds in February,” he told the House.

A conditional grant of Sh184 million from the Kenya Devolution Support Programme Level II will go towards various development projects in each of the four Sub- counties plus one county flagship project.

Kaptarakwa Sub-County Hospital (Keiyo South), Kapcherop Health Centre (Marakwet West) and Chesoi Sub- County Hospital (Marakwet East), will each receive Sh30 million for upgrading, which includes construction of theatre, morgue and purchase of equipment.

The Sh30 million for Keiyo North Sub- County will go towards the equipping of Kibendo Tomato factory, while upgrade of Rimoi Game Reserve, construction of eco lodges and roads was allocated Sh. 64 million.

The members said the upgrading of Rimoi will see an increase of revenue for the County from tourists, saying currently few tourists visit the game reserve due to the poor state of the roads while the few who visit are forced to seek accommodation elsewhere.

In its bid to boost the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, the Assembly allocated the Iten Water and Sanitation Company (ITWASCO) Sh13 million, saying it will go towards connecting more people, reduce the cost of water, buy chemicals to ensure residents access clean water and also repair broken pipes.

The Assembly also allocated Sh20 million that is Sh1 million per ward for vaccination of animals which is supposed to take place in the next three months to boost livestock production.

By Alice Wanjiru

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