Supreme Court wants mediation report on Division of Revenue Bill 2019 before next week
Chief Justice David Maraga has directed the National Assembly and the Senate to file their mediation report on the division of revenue Bill 2019 before September 23.
Maraga said a ruling on a preliminary objection raised on the Supreme Court’s jurisdiction to entertain the revenue allocation bill standstill will be made on October 8 at 9 am.
The objection was raised by the National Assembly speaker, Justin Muturi.
“The two houses of parliament having agreed on division of revenue for this financial year, we direct that they file mediation report on or before September 23, 2019. The parties having filed their written submissions on the issue we shall deliver our issue on October 8, 2019 at 9 am,” Said Maraga.
Speaking shortly after the mention of the matter on Monday, the Chairman of the Council of Governors, Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya expressed the council’s hopes that the process of finalising the division of revenue Bill 2019 will be expedited to ensure Counties have funds by the end of this week.
Oparanya further defended the council’s decision to seek an advisory from the Supreme Court saying it seeks to ensure policies around revenue distribution are streamlined to avoid future hiccups.
“In this case, we had to do with principles. We feel that if these principals are not addressed then we are going to have same issues coming back again.” Said Oparanya.
Mr. Oparanya asked the Supreme Court to solve the matter in the next hearing on the Revenue division to avoid repetition of revenue division impasse in the Counties in the next financial year 2020/21.
“As you know very well that budget process has started again, starts in September and will end come June next year, and some of the issues we have raised with the Supreme Court if not addressed then Counties are likely to suffer gin next year when it comes to allocation of revenue.”
Revenue allocation to Counties
After nearly three months of haggling over what Counties should receive as their share of revenue from the national coffers, with the Senate maintaining a hardline on revenue increment to Ksh335 billion, they later (September 5) came to a concurrence with Member of Parliament to settle on Ksh316 billion.
Senate majority leader Kipchumba Murkomen admitted that Counties were faced with the real prospect of shutting down their services, which would affect critical sectors such as agriculture and health.