MP explains why churches should be given CDF funds

Government should offer financial support to churches- MP says

Parliament during a previous session

A Member of Parliament is seeking to have churches allocated money from the National Government Constituency Development Fund (NG-CDF).

Suna West MP Peter Masara wants the National Assembly to pass the Amendment Bill, to allow churches allocated money from the fund arguing it is important that churches be listed as beneficiaries of the kitty.

The Bill seeks to amend section 25, part 3 and 4 of the NG-CDF Act which restricts religious activities to be funded.

If the Bill becomes law, MPs will be allowed to allocate at least two percent of the total NG-CDF money in their constituencies towards religious activities.

Giving churches official source of income

Churches, mosques and temples will have an official source of money from the government if the law is enacted.

Funds provided under this Act shall not be used for purposes of supporting political bodies or political activities or supporting religious bodies or religious activities,” section 25 (3) states.

He further stated that the funding to religious groups will not in any way increase public spending.

Under the current law, NG-CDF the funds may identify a religious body or an organisation as a specialised agency and only support sports activities, which also takes two percent of the total funds.

Leaders owe churches financial support

The Suna West MP said leaders turn to churches to seek divine intervention but leave out the institutions when it comes to development.

Dozens of learning and health institutions in the country are managed by churches, we also have orphanages, rescue centres for vulnerable and widow support centres supported by churches. All these institutions will benefit from this change,” Masara said.

The draft Bill was handed to the Speaker of the National Assembly Justin Muturi two weeks ago and is waiting to be published.

This comes amid heated discussions and accusations by politicians that churches are being used as places where corruption proceeds in Kenya are cleaned.

Opposition leader Raila Odinga has been vocal over the issue and even challenged churches to take a stand against receiving huge sums of money from politicians without questioning where the money is coming from.

"Churches are being used to launder money acquired through corruption. Those who launder money come to churches on weekends for harambees and people clap for them without questioning where the money is coming from," he said.

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