Setback for Uhuru-Raila team as Senate rejects revenue sharing formula

Unexpected turn of events in the Senate

Senate rejects population-driven revenue sharing formula after support from Raila Odinga and President Uhuru Kenyatta

The Senate has by a majority vote rejected the proposed population-driven revenue sharing formula for the 47 counties.

25 out of 47 Senators voted to reject the formula that had been endorsed by both President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM Leader Raila Odinga.

The new formula had emphasized population as the major determinant of revenue share unlike the past formula introduced in 2013 that was geographically and poverty driven.

Senate Majority Whip made a major concession after he introduced a new amendment to have the new formula take effect in the 2022-2023 financial year.

Kangata's adjustment, however, did little to persuade six Senators whose counties were winning but were uncomfortable with their colleagues getting less money that they had already budgeted for in the 2020-2021 financial year.

The Senators whose counties were winning but voted against the formula include Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo Marakwet), Johnson Sakaja (Nairobi), Cleophas Malala (Kakamega), Philip Mpayeei (Kajiado), Boniface Kabaka (Machakos), and Samuel Ongeri (Kisii).

The Senate has adjourned debate on the contentions matter for a total of six times and on Tuesday afternoon rejected a motion to adjourn for the seventh time as proposed by Senator Orengo.

Kangata, who is a close ally of President Kenyatta, had indicated that his team would withdraw support for the BBI process if Odinga's allies failed to back the new formula.

Senators James Orengo (Siaya), Fred Outa (Kisumu), Ochillo Ayacko (Migori), and Moses Kajwang' (HomaBay) all voted in favor of the new formula.

However, ODM Senators from Coast, North Eastern, Ukambani, and parts of the Rift Valley opposed the new formula and secured an unprecedented win.

The Senate will now debate a new proposed formula crafted by Senator Sakaja which proposes the old formula to apply for the Sh316 billion that was distributed to counties in 2019-2020.

The extra revenue would then be subjected to variables such as services needed and the level of poverty.

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