15 female MPs under pressure to refund Ksh.27M allowance for cancelled U.S trip


15 female MPs under pressure to refund Ksh.27M allowance for cancelled U.S trip
File image of the National Assembly during a previous sitting. PHOTO| COURTESY

In Summary

  • National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi last Tuesday announced the cancellation of a 15-day trip to the United States where the MPs were to attend the 64th session of commission on the status of women that was to be staged in New York.

At least 15 female Members of Parliament and members of staff are under pressure to surrender over Ksh.27 million they received as per diem for a trip to the United States that was later cancelled due to the global coronavirus scare.

National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi last Tuesday announced the cancellation of a 15-day trip to the United States where the MPs were to attend the 64th session of commission on the status of women that was to be staged in New York.

The cancellation however came a week after the Parliamentary Service Commission had processed the funds and members in the travel list facilitated in accordance with guidelines issued by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission.

Speaker Muturi hence directed that the lawmakers return the money wired into their accounts or collected individually from Parliament’s Finance department.

So far, none of the 15 MPs – each of whom collected a total of Ksh.1,847,520 – has refunded the money for the conference that was to kick off on March 7 to 22.

This amounts to at least Ksh.27.7 million, excluding the amount collected by Parliamentary staff members who were to accompany the MPs.

Among the MPs ordered to surrender the money collected in per diem include Homa Bay Woman Representative Gladys Wanga, her Trans Nzoia counterpart Janet Nangabo, Kisumu’s Rozah Buyu and Isiolo’s Rehema Jaldesa.

Nominated MP Denitah Ghati also has to refund facilitation money for the cancelled trip, as well as Taveta lawmaker Dr. Naomi Shaban, Kirinyaga Woman Representative Wangui Ngirichi, and Nominated Senators Millicent Omanga, Beatrice Kwamboka and Judy Pareno.

Some of the affected MPs told Citizen TV that they had spent the money and were seeking alternative sources to reimburse the cash to Parliament’s finance office.

However, if they fail to surrender the per diem, the monies will be deducted from their March salaries and they will also be blocked from future trips until they clear the outstanding amount.

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Story By Francis Gachuri
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