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WAMBUA: The Senator who petitioned gov’t to pay the forgotten Councillors

 Kitui Senator Enoch Kiio Wambua has successfully petitioned the Senate to pay former councillors Sh2.6Billion for the services they rendered to the country while working but are living in abject poverty and some are aging and sick.

Kitui Senator Enoch Wambua speaks at a burial in Chuluni last month. Photo/BONIFACE MWANIKI

But the ex-councillors will wait till the next financial year since the government said it was broke. National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani ruled out a supplementary budget to factor in the petition by the Kitui senator.

While appearing before the Senator committee on Labour, Amb Yatani said Kenya was facing hard economic times and the former councillors will have to wait until next financial year which coincides with 2022 election year.

There are 328 former councillors who served more than four terms and will be paid a one-off pay of Sh664,000. An additional 11,919 ex-councillors served for less than four years and are eligible to be paid Sh200,000.

The first-term Kitui senator said that by the government delaying to pay the former councillors’ gratuity, it showed disrespect to the elders who had shown patriotism in serving their nation.

Too little too late

“The threshold is too high, because to serve for four consecutive terms is meant to lock out as many councillors as possible, and to imagine that they will have to wait for another one year to get KSh. 200, 000 is in my view too little too late, and doesn’t speak to any respect at all,”, said Wambua.

The senator’s viewed were echoed by his colleagues who expressed need to address the payment in good time saying that some of the former administrators were frail and succumbing to illnesses.

Yatani appeared to blame the courts for stopping the implementation of charging minimum taxes that would have made the government to collect Sh22Billion. He revealed that the government was re-examining some of budgeted items that will be deferred over lack of funding in 2021/22 financial year.


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