Nairobi MCAs boycott session, protest over delayed allowances
Nairobi County Assembly MCAs boycotted the normal session on Tuesday and staged a protest inside the Assembly for the first time since they were sworn in last year.
Azimio la Umoja – One Kenya Coalition MCAs and those drawn from Kenya Kwanza teamed up in demanding their outstanding allowances.
The MCAs accused the clerk’s office of taking a long time to process their allowances, which they said was affecting operations in their wards.
Some of the MCAs, including Korogocho Ward representative Absalom Odhiambo, said they are yet to receive their allowances.
Mr Odhiambo accused the clerk’s office of bias in the payment of allowances, a claim denied by the clerk’s office and the Speaker of the County Assembly Kennedy Ng’ondi.
Addressing the media after the sitting was suspended, Speaker Ng’ondi said not all members had been paid and that the allegations of unfair treatment were more of a political witch-hunt.
He said he has already taken up some issues with the members and expressed confidence that they will resume the plenary session on Wednesday.
Mr Ng’ondi said the work plan and approval of per diems was a matter for the Executive and that the Assembly can not tell them what to prioritise.
“The work plan are normally developed by the Executive, so it is not in isolation that you can decide which wok plan to approve and which one not to approve, and you know that the Assembly is not independent. We don’t have the autonomy. We get money from the Executive,” he said.
The Speaker said the members are enjoying immunity privileges, and that there are some sittings which if they miss eight times will cost them their seats.
“They are bound by law that there are certain sittings which if they misses, then the seats will be declared vacant.”
Ironically, some departmental committees attended their sittings on morning hours, only to stage the boycott in the afternoon.