Counties are set to receive more money from the National Treasury following Parliament's adoption of the auditor-general's report on national government accounts for the year 2014/2015.
The National Assembly last week adopted the report that rebased government revenue following months of deliberations by the Public Accounts Committee chaired by Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi.
This means that allocations to the 47 devolved units will now be pegged on the Sh1.2 trillion that the national government received as total revenue in the 2014/15 financial year.
Respective accounting officers in government ministries, departments, commissions and independent officers appeared before the committee to respond to the audit queries raised by Auditor-General Edward Ouko regarding their expenditures.
“(The report) is the result of the utmost diligence, tenacity and focus with which the Committee members have taken their role and executed their mandate,” Mr Wandayi said while responding to accusations from a section of MPs that it was lacklustre in its consideration of Mr Ouko’s report.
In the current financial year, the county governments were allocated Sh372 billion in equitable share and conditional grants from the national government based on the accounts of 2013/14. About Sh345 billion was disbursed in the last financial year.
Article 203 (2) of the Constitution provides that for every financial year equitable share of the revenue raised nationally that is allocated to county governments should not be less than 15 percent of all revenue collected by the national government.
Subsection three of this provision notes that the amount of equitable share of the national revenue for the county governments is calculated on the basis of the most recent audited accounts of revenue received, as approved by the National Assembly.
Mr Wandayi noted that the adoption of the report marks a significant milestone for the Committee that has only been in office for one year.
He called upon the Directorate of Criminal Investigations, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission and the Director of Public Prosecutions to arrest and prosecute “those found culpable of squandering public funds”.
Majority Leader Aden Duale warned that county employees who misuse public funds should be prepared to face the law.