BY KORIR JUMA,NAIROBI,14TH JUNE,2021-Governors have threatened to shut down counties next week, citing lack of funds to run operations.
Through the Council of Governors, the county chiefs lamented the delayed disbursement of cash by the National Treasury, crippling operations and delivery of critical services to the residents.
COG chairman Martin Wambora (Embu) said the Treasury is yet to release Sh102.6 billion to the 47 devolved units, with only two weeks left to the end of the financial year.
As such, they have given an ultimatum to the Treasury to release the cash by Friday or they shut down the counties.
“Unfortunately, if the National Treasury fails to release the funds, counties will not be able to offer basic services thereby forcing suspension of services or total shutdown by June 24,” Wambora said.
Wambora addressed a press conference at the CoG headquarters in Nairobi on Monday.
He was flanked by his vice chair James Ongwae (Kisii) and James Nyoro (Kiambu).
The county bosses said that Treasury has not released the cash, for come counties like Nairobi, for up to six months now.
“The Treasury has not only failed to comply with the Constitution, but also with its own document- cash disbursement schedule, 2020,” Wambora said.
He added, “This has seen counties stigmatized for failing to offer critical services especially now in the time of Covid-19 pandemic, for what is beyond them.
Last week during the reading of the Budget, Treasury CS Ukur Yatani said counties had until the end of June to clear pending bills or risk not getting new funding.
In April this year, the Treasury issued a warning to ministries, state departments, and agencies over unpaid pending bills running into hundreds of billions of shillings.
Yatani had in a circular to all accounting officers asked MDAs to submit reports on the status of pending bills at the respective entities by April 30.