Governors have expressed scepticism regarding Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua's claims that Ksh10 billion was disbursed to aid them in countering El Nino's effects.
Speaking while distributing food to victims of floods at Kisauni, Mombasa, on November 21, 2022, Governor Abdullswamad Nassir and his Siaya counterpart James Orengo denied receiving the funds.
Both governors want the deputy president to clarify how the money was allocated and disbursed amid the pounding rain causing insurmountable damage.
“The truth is that the national government has not disbursed even a cent for the county government for El Nino, not even in his home county, Nyeri,” Orengo stated.
Nassir, on his part, called on the Parliament and the controller of the budget to investigate Gachagua's claims.
“There have been claims that the National Government has released 10 billion shillings for El Niño response to the counties. For the avoidance of doubt, despite the challenges, the County Government of Mombasa has managed its disaster response from our own source of revenue.” Nassir
Furthermore, the Kenya Red Cross and non-governmental organizations rushed to Mombasa's aid, according to the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) governor.
Wajir county leaders also pleaded with the government to release the funds, as the county is among the worst areas hit by the ongoing torrential rains.
Area Governor Ahmed Abdullahi cautioned that the situation may get out of hand unless the national government releases the funds earmarked in the supplementary budget.
In a statement sent to Kenyans.co.ke, the Council of Governors led by Kirinyaga chief boss Anne Waiguru stated the National Government was yet to allocate any funds towards mitigation measures.
Waiguru claimed that counties are owed a total of Ksh62.58 billion from the equitable share that is yet to be disbursed.
The amount was broken down as follows: 13 counties are owed Kshs.10.17 billion for the month of September, 27 are owed Kshs19.64 billion for the month of October, and all counties are owed Kshs32.76 billion for the month of November.
"As we conclude, we note with concern public utterances that suggest that County Governments have received funds from the National Government to support the mitigation of the devastating impact of the El Nino Rains. We take the position that such utterances are against the spirit of cooperative and collaborative Governments as envisioned under the provisions of Article 6(2) of the Constitution.
"In such times, we call upon the two levels of Government to come together in order to intensify response strategies to mitigate against the complex risks arising from the heavy rains and flooding in addition to the existing humanitarian challenges," the CoG chair urged.
Meanwhile, Gachagua, who flagged relief food at Msambweni in Kilifi County, urged governors to refrain from blaming the national government for their failure to mitigate El Nino effects.
"We want Governor Nassir to buy food for those affected by floods. As a governor, you also have money. People can't die yet you have kept money in the bank."
"When we are through with the El Nino challenge, we can resume development projects. Why would you invest in development when people are dying? Stop all the development projects in Mombasa," Gachagua alleged.
The el-nino rains are expected to last till next year, according to the Director of Meteorological Services, David Gikungu.
Gikungu, on Tuesday, told Members of the National Assembly Committee on Environment, Forestry, and Mining that the weather forecast issued earlier this year was not withdrawn.
“We are concerned that the head of state was misled earlier on when he made his comments on the now ongoing Elnino rains because we are now indeed in an Elnino season. The weather forecast that we gave at the beginning has not been withdrawn. It is 100 per cent true."