We have in the last four years had a taste of the Constitution and experienced various challenges. On the whole, there are four critical levels of oversight designed to spur the country to development. These include the Senate, the National assembly, County Assemblies and public participation.
However, these levels have rated rather poorly. For starters, the Senate has squandered the opportunity of checking the imperial powers of the presidency.
The net effect has thus been the exposure of the nascent regional governments to the central government executive’s interference, manipulation and obstruction.
Delay in disbursement of funds, duplication of roles in education, health and infrastructure development has been the norm. County governors have sometimes resorted to borrowing expensive money from financial institutions just to keep their administrations afloat. All this has been happening under the noses of senators.
The National Assembly long lost its soul to the highest bidder. This has emboldened the Executive to run with zero oversight.
The county assemblies, like the Senate, are an important institution tasked with the oversight of the billions of shillings allocated to counties every year.
MCAs are tasked with legislation at the county level and holding to account the county executive and the Governor. Instead, the current lot of MCAs have acquired notoriety in the plunder of the same resources they are meant to safeguard.
Lastly, the public has slept on the job of participation in governance. This especially goes to the various professionals such as teachers, medics, lawyers and farmers who still live in the old mentality that their elected leaders will take care of all matters to do with policy.
The people must wake up and take their place as it is clear that the leaders they elect will instinctively only ponder self enrichment at the expense of development for all. The people must be reminded that the Constitution requires us to play dutiful oversight role of all elected leaders.
In a nutshell, there has been very poor work done in the oversight of the prudent use of public money that has led to a loss of wealth and time. But it is never too late as it has been a learning experience for all of us.
Let’s all rise up and correct the mistakes that we have made in the all important national duty of oversight over the use of tax money.
FELIX ONYEGO, Kisii