Last Thursday, the National Assembly slashed Sh1B allocated to the Senate for oversight. The move has caused uproar especially among Senators who have termed it as irrational and malicious, aimed at blackmailing the upper house not to effectively discharge its constitutional mandate of oversight.
One of the senators, angered by the slashing of the Sh1B is Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo Junior who has also described the move as unfortunate and mischievous.
In his official Facebook page, the senator said the National Assembly slashed the Senate and the Judiciary’s budget as a punishment to the both institutions especially after Senate sought an advisory opinion from the courts on the Division of Revenue Bill in which the Judiciary ruled that the Senate must be involved in the bill.
In his post, Mutula Junior castigated National Assembly terming it as worse than any dictatorships that the country has been fighting against.
He particularly took a swipe at Gachoka MP Reverend Mutava Musyimi who the senator said, needs prayers. The MP chaired the Mediation Committee on Division of Revenue Bill 2015 and while contributing to the discussion on the bill in Parliament on Wednesday June 3, said that the Senate should be prepared to part with the Sh1B.
The post has stirred a flurry of reactions from Makueni residents on social media with a major backing the youthful senator.
Below is the post by the senator and the subsequent reactions.
The infamous tag that the MP were greedy as pigs also resurfaced in the debate
Others noted that the National Assembly was rogue and the move mischievous
But there ate those who were opposed to the senator’s assertions…
They even queried were the money would come from…
The Senate lost the Sh1B after the National Assembly slashed it’s budget together with other government institutions to achieve the requirements of the mediated Division of Revenue Bill.
Chairman National Budget and Appropriations Committee MP Musyimi, who also doubled as the Mediation Committee Chair and Majority Leader Aden Duale had earlier warned that National Assembly would slash some budgets to raise an extra Sh3.3 billion which the Senate had proposed as an allocation of Sh1.5B for Level 5 Hospitals and a further Sh1.7B for salaries for the devolved units.
The slash of the budget could therefore be a culmination of disputes pitting the National Assembly and the Senate on the Division of Revenue. The two legislative houses recently struck a deal on the Division of Revenue Bill 2015, in which they agreed that the counties would get Sh287 billion up from the Sh283.7 billion proposed by the National Assembly and down from Sh291 billion set by the Senate following a month long impasse.
The Senate could therefore be the greatest losers in the Division of Revenue Bill in which they negotiated for the additional Sh3.3B.
The National Assembly had argued that the Treasury could not afford more money for the counties, but the Senate maintained that the funds could be achieved by reallocating resources. Little did the Senate know that they would be the first culprits of the reallocation.
Judging from the sentiments of the Makueni Senator the move by the MPs has certainly caught the Senate unawares.