More than half of constituencies miss out on CDF

More than half of the constituencies have missed out on the Constituency Development Fund disbursements after the Treasury released inadequate allocations amid a cash crunch in government.

The Treasury released Sh2 billion last Friday for the first quarter of the financial year, and this could only be disbursed to 121 out of the 290 constituencies, representing 41 per cent.

The CDF Board on Tuesday told Parliament constituencies that had not received last year’s funds and those with CDF bank account balances of below S.5 million were given priority.

The legislators will control S2.97 billion under CDF in the year to June 2016, and they were expected to have received about Sh7 billion in the three months to September.

“The rate at which the Treasury has started disbursement is very slow. We are doing badly,” said Moses Lesonet who chairs the House Committee on CDF.

The CDF allocations are sent directly to constituencies where MPs wield influence on the use of cash.

Of the 121 constituencies that received funds, only 47 got money budgeted for the current year while the remaining 74 received funds that were not disbursed in the year ended June. The Treasury is yet to disburse Sh2.9 billion for previous years.

The cash crunch had stalled payment of essential services like rural electrification and free primary education in a crisis blamed on low revenue collection, high borrowing costs and payment of debts.

Not a single cent has been released to kick start development projects in the internal security, science and technology as well as job-creating industries like fisheries, tourism and mining in quarter one.