MPs want more money from Kenyans, again!
Members of Parliament have been asked to allocate Parliament Sh42.5 billion in the next financial year, an increase of Sh12.5 billion from its budget for the current financial year.
The budget consists of Sh39.3 billion as recurrent expenditure, an increase of Sh10 billion, and Sh3.2 billion to fund development, an increase of Sh1.7 billion.
The proposal by the Parliamentary Service Commission was tabled in the National Assembly on Wednesday morning and will be scrutinised by the Budget and Appropriations Committee in consultation with the Treasury.
Treasury had said in its Budget Policy Statement it planned to set aside Sh31.7 billion for Parliament.
This means the House would either have to reduce its budget or convince the Budget committee that it needs more.
With its higher membership, the National Assembly takes the bigger portion of the budget – Sh23.4 billion – all of which will be spent on recurrent expenses.
The Senate will get Sh15.9 billion for the same.
Senators could finally succeed in their protracted battle to get funds for their oversight of county governments as they have been allocated Sh2.7 billion for their county offices, an increase of Sh350.6 million from the current financial year.
The regulations on how the money will be shared between the elected and nominated senators have been submitted to the National Assembly for scrutiny by the Committee on Delegated Legislation.
Overall, both Houses will spend a combined Sh6.4 billion on travel, if the allocations are approved.
The National Assembly is the biggest spender in this area at Sh2.3 billion for domestic travel and Sh370 million for foreign travel.
Another Sh815.1 million has been allocated for domestic travel and Sh1 billion for foreign travel by committees in the next financial year.
In the Senate, Sh660 million has been allocated to foreign travel, Sh203.8 million for foreign travel and another Sh413.1 million and Sh272.5 million for domestic and foreign travel by committees.
The Speaker of the Senate has been allocated Sh54.3 million for domestic travel and Sh50 million for foreign travel while the National Assembly Speaker has been allocated Sh34.9 million for domestic travel and Sh72.1 million for foreign travel.
The biggest chunk of Parliament’s development expenditure will be spent on the ongoing construction of a 27-storey office block next to Continental House, with Sh1.8 billion budgeted for it.
Parliament also plans to spend Sh800 million on a security system.
A plan to acquire land for the Centre for Parliamentary Studies appears to have been dropped, with the institution only allocated Sh50 million for the construction of buildings.