Controller of Budget calls for meeting over Meru Ward Development Fund row

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The Controller of Budget has invited Meru County government officials for a consultative meeting to agree on the Ward Development Fund.

This is after governor Kawira Mwangaza and Speaker Ayub Bundi wrote to the office of the Controller of Budget (CoB) seeking an advisory on the establishment of a ward fund.

Members of the county assembly have been engaged in a bitter tussle with the governor over establishment of the fund.

In a letter addressed to the governor and the speaker, Controller of Budget Margaret Nyakang’o referred to a 2018 circular that issued guidelines on ward development budgets.

“In light of the raging controversy and divergent views reflected in the two letters, we invite you for a consultative meeting on Friday, 4th November 2022 at our offices…to discuss pertinent issues and find consensus on the implementation of the Ward funds in accordance with the provisions of the law,” the letter states.

Governor Mwangaza had sought clarity whether a fund managed by MCAs was legal while Speaker Bundi insisted it had been implemented by the executive in the previous regimes.

“We advise that the establishment of the Ward Development Fund will contravene regulation 197 of the public finance management Act, therefore, ward projects should be budgeted under the development budgets and implemented by the respective departments…” the 2018 (CoB) advisory reads.

The Meru governor has pledged to allocate Sh100 million for each of the 45 wards if allowed by the CoB.

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