What The Constitution Says About Public Participation Amid Referenda Push

The 2010 Constitution which is citizen- centered in governance requires all state institutions both at the national and county government level to ensure that citizens are involved in decision-making through public participation. However, full implementation of this constitutional provision remains a challenge since the process is either hijacked by politicians and public officials dictating or … Continue reading “What The Constitution Says About Public Participation Amid Referenda Push”

What The Constitution Says About Public Participation Amid Referenda Push

Currently there is no law to effect the constitutional provisions on public participation by public institutions other than a policy on the requirement developed by the Attorney General’s office in September 2018 for taxpayer-funded bodies to follow.  (https://www.statelaw.go.ke/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/DOC-20181113-WA0023.doc) The policy defines public participation as the process where citizens including individuals, groups or communities (stakeholders) get … Continue reading “What The Constitution Says About Public Participation Amid Referenda Push”

Now is the time for Budget-related Media Reports

Very importants, but usually underreported: The supplementary budgets for the financial year 2019 /2020, where the parliament and the county assemblies shift money around between different programmes – but not always to the benefit of the citizen. We have added an extensive page about this to the budget section in our toolbox. Click here. The … Continue reading “Now is the time for Budget-related Media Reports”

Timeline of Budget Making

The budget making process in Kenya follows a strict timeline. At every stage of the process, there are various key events that happen which are newsworthy. Exclusive stories can be generated at different stages in the budget making process – from formulation, approval, implementation and audit. For details on the budget cycle, Refer  to section … Continue reading “Timeline of Budget Making”

Delay of County Budget Budget Papers may cause Trouble

Several County Assemblies in Kenya are once again on an illegal path with the budget making process. Already several critical documents that inform the budget making process have delayed in terms of submission, processing and approval in the County Assembly. Media in the Counties are yet to report on the budgeting delays which are illegal, … Continue reading “Delay of County Budget Budget Papers may cause Trouble”

Kakamega MCAs cost 12 Times as much as Turkana MCAs – why?

The latest Report of the Controller of Budget on the Budget Implementation in the counties in the financial year 2017/2018 reveals interesting data about  sitting allowances of MCAs. They vary considerably – and, at least on first sight, unexplainably. A good opportunity for county media to follow-up on. The extremes: The Turkana MCAs received only … Continue reading “Kakamega MCAs cost 12 Times as much as Turkana MCAs – why?”

Analysed: The huge Gaps in MCA Sitting Allowances

The Budget Implementation report by the Controller of Budget (CoB) for the financial year 2017/2018 reveals massive differences and massive under-expenditure in sitting allowances for Members of County Assemblies. Both raise serious questions on what informs the inclusion of the huge amounts in the budgets and where the differences stem from. The media can follow … Continue reading “Analysed: The huge Gaps in MCA Sitting Allowances”

Auditor General Reports for 2014/15 finally online

The Auditor General reports for the national government and counties for FY2014/2015 are out giving reporters an opportunity to follow key leads to develop exclusive stories. Reporters can easily access the audit reports which point to glaring misuse of public funds and at times diversion of funds to non core areas. The reports are already online … Continue reading “Auditor General Reports for 2014/15 finally online”

Budgets for Next Year may be illegal in Kenya

Budget making in the Kenyan nation and counties is far behind schedule, raising fears that these most important documents for the financial year 2017/2018 may finally be illegal. Parliament and County Assemblies have been already waiting as long as 13 weeks for pivotal papers needed for a responsible decision making process. This makes it more … Continue reading “Budgets for Next Year may be illegal in Kenya”

Overview: Documents & Principles of Budgeting

The county assembly decides on the budget though it is prepared by the executive. One principle according to the law: 30 percent of the county budget has to be spent for development. That means no more than 70 percent may be spent for recurrent expenditures like wages. Many counties have not met this goal.

When Google finds more than the Governor’s Site itself

Many times it is better to search for documents using external search engines like google rather than internal search functions within a website. If you efficently use web search engines like google, you find more information relating to a topic than just what is published on the website. See how by looking at one example:

The County Fiscal Strategy Paper – CFSP

The CFSP is tabled in the county assembly no later than February 28.The document is approved (with or without amendments) by the 15th of March. The counterpart to the CFSP on the national level is the BPS, Budget Policy Statement.

Story: The County Emergency Fund

In times of emergencies, the Constitution and relevant laws, specifically the Public Finance Management Act allow for money to be budgeted and spent for these emergencies so as to alleviate human suffering. The Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) states in Section 112 what the County Emergency Fund (CEF) can and cannot be used for:

County Exchequer Account

The County Exchequer Account is an account held by the County at the Central bank where all money that is raised by or on behalf of the county government is to be paid. The County revenue fund which includes all local revenue collected and funds disbursed to counties by the National government is kept.

County Revenue Fund

All money that is raised by or on behalf of the county government is to be paid into the County Revenue Fund. The money deposited in the County revenue account include disbursements from the national government, locally raised revenue, appropriations in aid, and loans advanced to the County. Donor funds also have to be declared.

Budget Review and Outlook Paper – CBROP

The County Budget Review and Outlook paper (CBROP) is prepared in line with the Public Finance Management Act, 2012 section 118. The Act requires that every county prepares a CBROP by 30th September of that financial year and submit the same to the County Assembly.

The Amended Budget

It is often neglected (sometimes intentionally), to make the amended budget public – and to report on it. During the financial year, amendments are made to the approved budget through supplementary budgets. Refer to section 135 of PFM Act. Supplementary budgets are proposals by governments to move funds from one sector to another or from … Continue reading “The Amended Budget”

The Approved Budget

The proposed budget has to be approved  before June 30th to allow the County to spend money from the budget allocation in the new financial year. The County Executive tables the proposed budget in the County Assembly by April 30th. The County Assembly first submits the proposed budget to the committee on Budget and Appropriation.

The Proposed Budget

The proposed budget is a document presenting the government’s proposed revenues, spending and priorities for a financial year. The proposed budget is to be submitted to the County Assembly by the 30th April of each year. It is prepared following ceilings set out in the County Fiscal strategy Paper. The document is further prepared with … Continue reading “The Proposed Budget”

County Assembly Budget

The County Assembly is entitled to a maximum of 10 percent of the entire County budget according to ceilings issued by the Commission on Revenue Allocation. The proposal for the County assembly budet is prepared by the County Assembly Service Board (CASB), chaired by the Speaker. Its tasks are named in the County Governments Act, … Continue reading “County Assembly Budget”

The County Budget

With the new Constitution and devolution a lot more about what should be done is now decided in the counties. At the heart of decision making is the county budget. No expenditure if it is not budgeted. That is the principle. So it is important for a journalist to know how and when the budget … Continue reading “The County Budget”

Is your County Budget Making Process on Schedule?

The county governments are rushing to complete their budget making process for the financial year 2017/2018 in accordance with a circular by the National Treasury advising counties to complete their budget process by 31st March 2017. The county governments revised their budget calendars and the county budget making process is being rushed to ensure that … Continue reading “Is your County Budget Making Process on Schedule?”