MPs Unite, Demand Immediate Release of Sh63 Billion Funds

In a rare display of bipartisan unity, Members of Parliament (MPs) from both sides of the political spectrum joined forces on Tuesday to demand the immediate release of the Sh63 billion National-Government Constituency Development Fund (NG-CDF). The lawmakers issued a stern ultimatum, threatening to initiate impeachment proceedings against Treasury boss Njuguna Ndung’u if the allocated funds do not reach constituencies within seven days.

President William Ruto had earlier announced the disbursement of Sh10 billion during his visit to Sugutek in Uasin Gishu county, assuring that the funds would be distributed within the week. However, MPs claim they have yet to receive a single shilling, particularly impacting students who rely on CDF bursaries to cover their fees as schools reopened.

Led by Rarieda MP Otiende Amollo, the lawmakers criticized the Kenya Kwanza administration for intentionally delaying the disbursement of CDF cash at a critical time when schools are reopening for the academic year. Amollo declared that if the funds are not received by the following Tuesday, they will push for a special parliamentary session to initiate impeachment proceedings against the Treasury CS and the NG-CDF board.

“We demand that the entire allocation of the CDF must be released within seven days as is due. If that is not done, we will call for a special sitting of the House and draft an appropriate motion against the CS Treasury and the NG-CDF board or any other entity as we may determine at the time,” Amollo stated emphatically.

The MPs, speaking in unison, vowed to table a motion against Ndung’u, emphasizing the urgency of releasing the CDF funds for the benefit of students, particularly those in secondary schools, colleges, and universities.

Otiende Amollo highlighted a CDF memo from January 2024 that purportedly directed all CDF account managers to withhold funds due to amendments to the CDF Act. The MPs dismissed this memo as misguided, arguing that the amendments affected only a small percentage of the funds, and there was no reason for the Treasury to withhold the remaining 94 percent.

While acknowledging amendments to the Act late last year, Amollo deemed the memo a deliberate delay tactic, insisting that the changes should have been implemented in the upcoming 2024/2025 Financial Year starting in July 2024.

Several MPs, including Stephen Mogaka, Martin Wanyonyi, John Makali, and Millie Odhiambo, expressed their solidarity with the demand for immediate fund release. They accused the government of reallocating CDF funds to other state departments at the expense of constructing much-needed classrooms for schoolchildren.

The recent threats of impeachment follow weeks of frustration among MPs, who previously staged a walkout in protest of the prolonged delay in CDF disbursement. Minority leader Opiyo Wandayi had earlier urged members to halt legislative activities until the matter was resolved, highlighting the six-month delay in funds reaching NG-CDF committees and NGAAF.

As the parliament approaches a long recess, the MPs stressed the urgency of resolving the CDF disbursement issue, especially considering the imminent reopening of schools. The Treasury was accused of leading MPs in circles and failing to prioritize the education and welfare of millions of school-going children dependent on the timely release of CDF funds.


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