Uhuru's car grants gift to MCAs face hurdles

County Assembly Speakers and Members of County Assembly(MCAs) may not be receiving the Ksh. 4.5 million car grant awarded to them by President Uhuru Kenyatta any time soon as was widely expected.

This is after the Office of the Controller of the Budget (OCOB) said there was no provision in law to implement it.

In a letter seen by Business Today, the controller of the budget Dr. Margret Nyakango sought out advice on how to implement the grant. The letter was addressed to the Salaries and Remuneration Commission(SRC).

The OCOB seeks to be told how to handle requests to authorize withdrawals from County revenue to finance the car grants.

“We, therefore, seek your clarification on how to convert the car loan facility to a car grant taking into account all the scenarios and how to treat interest so far paid by the beneficiaries,” the letter noted.

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President Uhuru Kenyatta in a past virtual call

The controller of budget noted that some counties were faced with the challenge of implementing the directive with insufficient funds, since most had only budgeted for a car loan facility and not a car grant while others merged the car loan and mortgage into one fund.

She further stated that while reviewing the requests by governors she noticed that in some counties the Speakers and MCAs had not accessed the car loan facility. In other cases, the car loan had been granted and fully paid while in others, the loan was borrowed and partially paid, and, in some counties, MCAs and Speakers accessed the loan from the j***t car and mortgage fund catering for both county staff and MCAs.

On 10 February, SRC approved the Sh4.5 billion car grant President Uhuru Kenyatta offered speakers and MCAs. SRC Chairperson Lyn Mengich reviewed car loan benefits to a transport facilitation benefit in form of a car grant.

The commission further noted that the grant was payable to the county speakers and members of the county assembly.

“Conversion of the car loan facility to a car grant will be undertaken within the available car loan facility funds of Sh4.5 million and will not affect the expenditure ceiling.

“Upon conversion, the existing car loan shall cease and the speakers and Members of the County Assembly who have already benefited from the existing car loan shall convert their car loan to transport facilitation benefit in form of a car grant,” read the notice in part.

The commission added that the benefit was only applicable to the current speakers and MCAs only.

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