Operations in most Counties are almost grinding to a halt because of lack of funds. Although the Senate approved release of funds to counties, the national government is yet to do the same. Contractors and County employees are some of the worst affected given some have not been paid since July.
Earlier in the week, Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya threatened that governors will move to court if the National Treasury does not release money to counties. He said that the national government was deliberately delaying in releasing the cash.
Oparanya said that deliberate failure to release money to counties is a violation of the constitution Uhuru Kenyatta swore to protect. Reportedly, 24 polytechnics in his county have been closed due to financial challenges.
West Pokot Governor John Lonyangapuo joined Oparanya in agitating for release of funds. He said that most services have been crippled and that counties are broke and idle. Lonyangapuo blamed the current political standoff between Uhuru and Raila as the reason for delay.
He stated that the national and county governments are distinct entities and the former should not paralyze operations in the latter because of politics. Lonyangapuo urged the Treasury to release cash to counties immediately for them to pay workers’ salaries and continue providing critical services.
County employees such as local security enforcers say that their September salary has been updated on their payslips but the money is yet to be credited to their accounts. Contractors and suppliers are also saying payment for services and goods is already approved but there is no cash yet.