Senators want SRC out for scrapping Ward reps salaries

Monday, June 12th, 2023 09:40 | By
Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei
Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei. PHOTO/Courtesy

Senators want Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) disbanded for slashing salaries of Ward Reps and abolishing their allowances.

This is after Senator Samson Cherargei (Nandi) sought a statement from the floor of the House and questioned why MCAs’ salaries were reduced and their sitting allowances removed.

Cherargei argued that in the Financial Year 2022/23, MCAs’ salaries and allowances were slashed, rendering them unable to execute their oversight role effectively.

“The committee should state reasons for the reduction of MCAs’ salaries, removal of their sitting allowances, car grants and mileage allowances since 2022 to date,” Cherargei charged. Senate Majority Whip Dr Boni Khalwale (Kakamega) said MCAs are yearning for financial autonomy, adding that senators divide the money among counties in the County Allocation of Revenue Bill, and after making the law, governors start treating the money as theirs. 

Senate Deputy Minority Leader Enock Wambua (Kitui) said MCAs are at the bottom of the pyramid when it comes to carrying out oversight responsibilities, adding that courts have pronounced themselves on the important role played by MCAs.  “To expect that an MCA will earn Sh86,000 and then recruit CECMs who earn Sh400,000 is laughable. To expect that MCAs will oversight governors who are controlling billions of shillings is to expect too much from our MCAs,” Wambua said.

Senate Majority Leader Aaron Cheruiyot (Kericho) charged that there is no day a Kenyan will ever expect an extra coin to go to the pocket of any politician.

He said SRC should explain before the House justification for their findings, adding that it is grossly out of order.

Extra coin

“It is unfair to expect that our MCAs will perform their constitutional mandate and be the bodies and organs that Kenyans envisioned when they passed the Constitution while being paid a paltry Sh80,000. At the same time, they have been denied car grants and sitting allowance just like they did for Members of this House,” said Cheruiyot.

Senate Deputy Speaker Kathuri Murungi (Meru) called for the disbandment of SRC, claiming members of the commission draw allowances to the tune in excess of Sh40,000 per meeting, while MCAs, who are elected sit in a county Assembly to execute their mandate, hardly get Sh3,000.

Prof Tom Ojienda (Kisumu) however, called on the House to be alive to the implications of any increase of wages or salaries to the economy.

“Some of the contributions I hear in this House by the Majority Whip are fairly populist. They seem to appeal to the MCAs ignoring the crux of the question as to whether these assemblies undertake oversight,” Ojienda said.

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