Sonko’s City Hall is broke, asks Treasury for money
The Nairobi County Government has written to the National Treasury seeking Sh3.32 billion to pay workers’ salaries and avert a looming strike.
Governor Mike Sonko had earlier accused former county executive for Finance Gregory Mwakanongo of the cash crunch at City Hall after he failed to make a formal request to the Controller of Budget to release funds to the county.
The county government has written to Treasury CS Henry Rotich requesting the September equitable share of Sh1.22 billion and an advance of the October equitable share of Sh1.299 billion to pay salaries.
In the letter dated October 18, 2017 signed by three signatories, the county has further requested an advance of Sh800 million to offset current expensive interest on an overdraft facility at the Cooperative Bank of Kenya, which will be recovered in a monthly instalment of approximately Sh89 million.
“The total sum request therefore is Sh3.32 billion being the equitable share for September and October 2017 and an advance of Sh800 million to have a seamless flow of services,” read the letter signed by acting Head of Treasury Stephen Mutua, acting Chief Finance Officer Ekaya Alumasi and acting County Secretary Leboo Moritant.
Mr Sonko added that the county executive and assembly salaries stands at approximately Sh1.2 billion per month.
Through a statement, Mr Sonko said that the Finance department was yet to make a request to the Controller of Budget Mrs Agnes Odhiambo despite his many requests to them.
“I personally intervened and had a lengthy discussion with the Controller of Budget Mrs Agnes Odhiambo over the matter and was shocked to learn that my Finance department had not requested for release of funds, despite my many requests to them,” said Mr Sonko.
He said that he decided to reorganise the Finance department, adding that the sabotage was a ploy by a cartel at the finance, legal, rates and revenue departments to fight back.
The governor urged the workers to be patient as the county cannot withdraw the cash collected as revenue, which is taken to the Central Bank Revenue Fund.
“The law is clear that all revenue generated and banked in commercial banks must first be swept and deposited at the Central Bank Revenue Fund and that upon depositing no money can be withdrawn from a Revenue Fund unless the Controller of Budget has approved such withdrawals. On the other hand, the Constitution prohibits spending of revenue collected at source,” said Mr Sonko.