Governor Waiguru rejects MCAs’ amendments to COVID-19 budget


Governor Waiguru rejects MCAs' amendments to COVID-19 budget
File image of Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru. PHOTO| COURTESY

Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru has rejected amendments made by MCAs to the Supplementary II budget that is supposed to accommodate funds for COVID-19 management.

The Governor on Tuesday said the back and forth by the MCAs to allocate more funds to themselves is unfortunate and at the expense of Kirinyaga residents, adding that it was hampering the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Supplementary II  budget was meant to accommodate Ksh.20 million to be used for putting in place mitigation measures against the coronavirus in the county.

However, instead of passing the budget, the assembly went ahead to re-allocate Ksh.100 million earlier allocated to Kerugoya Hospital Complex and another Ksh.30 million allocated to fuel used for in-house road programs and allocated them to ward-based projects.

Governor Waiguru said that the assembly’s amendments were not practical since the funds that were originally factored in this financial year’s budget had been significantly absorbed therefore reallocation is impractical and illegal.

She said that the assembly’s demand to see the balances themselves were just delay tactics which have dealt a big blow to the fight against Covid-19 in the county.

“We had presented supplementary II budget to accommodate funds to help in the management of COVID-19 but now the MCAs have become a stumbling block by introducing amendments in the budget to allocate more funds to themselves,” said the governor.

She cited that the reallocation of money from the hospital will hamper the delivery of universal health care to the county residents adding that removal of Ksh.30 million allocated to fuel would also have adverse effects on the ongoing in-house road rehabilitation program.

The governor has called on Members of County Assembly to put aside what she termed as selfish interests and consider what is beneficial to the residents.

Even though the county does not currently have COVID-19 cases, she says delay in passing the budget may put many lives at risk should there be an outbreak of the disease in the county.

The COVID-19 budget was supposed to expand the county’s capacity to handle the pandemic by procuring some of the medical and non-medical equipment required as well as expansion of COVID-19 isolation facilities among other interventions.

At the same time the governor has termed as unfortunate the extent to which the assembly is going to frustrate the executive, citing the ongoing threats to impeach some members of the county executive committee.

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Story By Johnson Muriithi
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