Today, the Governor of Machakos County appointed the County and Budget Forum. However, what was very revealing was what Dr. Alfred Mutua was implying within the documents, not who he appointed to the position. Usually that would be an important piece to look into.
However, today was the day where the Governor revealed directly that the World Bank Development secured 1bn Ksh per year for 6 years to the infrastructure building in the county. This being roads, electricity and other needed government services in the municipalities of Machakos.
Usually these sort of arrangements are done directly with the National Government or the Parliament, as to where the development is happening and where the grants are going. Which project that matter and what is sufficiently holding the standards of the stakeholders and the ones contributing the funding. Nevertheless, here the implication is that the World Bank is directly involved in all county functions from sewage to building roads. That their funding are going to do what the government is supposed to deliver. This being the natural delivery of the state and basic upkeep of the infrastructure. Instead of being tax-payers own money, they are using funds from abroad to do the needed development projects and to get the needed services in the municipalities of Machakos.
We can wonder what does the Jubilee government and Kenyatta think of this? When the Counties themselves are directly making arrangements and funding deals with the World Bank? In a republic filled to the brim of loans and lack of cash-flow, these sort of deals would be appropriate to go through the Central Government before the Local Government. However, that one has not captured the imagination. Because shouldn’t the Central Bank of Kenya or the Cabinet Secretary of Finance Henry Rotich signed it off before the County announced the loans?
That is what is bugging me, or is the counties so liberated from the Central Government now? But wouldn’t the rate of loans and grants be more uncontrolled and have less transparent system, if every Governor has the chance to grab these from Multi-National Financial Institutions and find ways to apply these locally? Even though they know directly what and where things need to be built and what is lacking. Still, they should have a rubberstamp from the CS and the National Treasury and CBK before thinking about it. Because in the mind of the Governor, he just announced it in passing together with the appointments to the different boards in his county. Peace.