The cost of the functions still at the national government is estimated at Sh272 billion
The Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee (IGTRC) has appealed to the Senate to intervene and push for complete transfer of devolved functions and resources to counties.
IGTRC, a state agency mandated to establish a framework of consultation and cooperation between the two levels of governments, says significant elements of devolved functions remain at the national government 10 years since devolution was first implemented.
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IGRTC chairperson, Kithinji Kiragu, told the Devolution and Intergovernmental Relations Committee that there is need for consensus on quantum and timeframe for transfer of the functions and asked Parliament to appropriately and timely incorporate the funds in the County Allocation Revenue Act.
“Considerable resources needed to fund devolved functions still remain at the disposal of the national government,” said Kiragu.
Legal notice No.142 of August 2019 outlined the llibrary function and distributed 59 libraries domiciled in 33 counties.
IGRTC has recommended to the Senate that the remaining 14 counties be supported to establish libraries through conditional grants beginning with Sh100 million to each county.
The agency cites challenges and confusion in the allocation of money for setting up a library, and wants the Senate to intervene and address the issue.
“The allocation of the library funds was distributed as part of the equitable share to the 47 county governments and not as a grant to the 33 county governments to which libraries and staff were transferred,” said Kiragu.
Consequently, county governments with libraries received allocations that were lower than the original allocation to cater for staff remuneration.
County governments which did not receive libraries and staff were erroneously allocated funds, in the circumstances, some county governments have failed to take up the function due to less budgetary allocation to perform the function and the expanded wage bill.
IGRTC further said the Early Childhood Development and Education (ECDE) function was devolved without resources for its implementation and called on the legislators to help in addressing the challenge.
The Intergovernmental Relations Technical Committee told the Legislators that there is a need to have a National Symposium bringing together all the stakeholders to discuss the status of devolution.
The committee assured IGRTC of support and asked members of the agency to be candid when discharging their duties.
“Overcoming the existing challenges will require political goodwill and commitment from both levels of Government,” said Kiragu.