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Supreme Court Dismisses National Assembly’s Objection On Counties’ Revenue Petition

Supreme Court Judge Njoki Ndung'u [Photo/Courtesy]

The Supreme Court of Kenya has dismissed an objection by the National Assembly on its jurisdiction to hear a revenue suit filed by the Council of Governors (COG).

In a ruling delivered on Tuesday by Justice Njoki Ndung’u the court ruled that it has a jurisdiction to hear the matter.

Justice Ndung’u, however, stated that although the court will hear the case, it will not give its opinion all the issues raised by counties.

She noted that the Deputy Registrar will on 16th October communicate to all the parties in the case-specific issues that the court will entertain during the hearing of the petition.

CoG filed the case in July after the National Assembly and the Senate disagreed on the 2019 Division of Revenue bill.

Read: Senators Bow To Pressure, Agree To Ksh316 Billion Revenue Share For Counties

Attempts at mediation failed after the two houses failed to agree on how much the counties should get.

National Assembly representatives in the mediation committee agreed on Ksh316 billion but the Senate disagreed settling for Ksh327 billion but later pulled an about-turn and passed the Ksh335 billion which had been recommended by the Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA).

In its application, the National Assembly argued that the Supreme Court lacks the jurisdiction to issue an advisory opinion on the matter because the matters raised in the petition are subject of ongoing proceedings before the High court.

The impasse has since been resolved after the senate bowed to pressure from the executive and the parliament to agree to Ksh316 equitable revenue share to the counties.

Read: Governors Threaten To Shut Down County Operations Over Revenue Stalemate

Addressing the press early last month, Senate Majority leader Kipchumba Murkomen said that the move was to ensure that services continued smoothly at the county level.

Governors had threatened to shut down all county operations if the parties didn’t resolve the matter.

“The County Governments will not be able to pay salaries at end of this month going forward. Beyond, the 16th of September 2019, if the matter is not resolved the County Governments will have no option but to shut down,” the statement released by CoG Governor Wycliffe Oparanya on August 29, read in part.

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Written by Wycliffe Nyamasege

Just email news@kahawatungu.com

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